Policies In The Tobacco Retail Environment: California Voters

On August 2, 2011, the American Lung Association in California’s Center for Tobacco Policy & Organizing released the results of a survey of 600 California voters to assess their views on tobacco retailer licensing ordinances and other policies in the tobacco retail environment. In addition, the Center partnered with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and the Santa Clara County Public Health Department for identical surveys in those two counties. A total of 561 voters were surveyed in Los Angeles County and 354 voters in Santa Clara County. There are three distinct sets of results for this survey – California voters, Los Angeles County voters and Santa Clara County voters.

All three survey results show strong support for public health policies in the tobacco retail environment. Specifically, 83% of California voters support requiring store owners to get a license and 80% support an annual fee of a couple of hundred dollars to enforce the law. In addition, there is a high level of support among California voters for several of the policy options that can be “plugged-in” to the basic licensing ordinance, with 73% of voters in support of restricting stores within 1,000 feet of schools from selling tobacco products and 82% in support of requiring stores to post warning signs about the dangers of tobacco use.