Partnership to End Addiction applauds the Biden Administration’s announcement of a nationwide ban on menthol cigarettes. This long-overdue but welcome development will help prevent countless young people from using nicotine products. Menthol is the flavor that most commonly draws them to smoking and other forms of nicotine use.
Likewise, this move will block decades-old aggressive marketing tactics by the tobacco industry, which specifically targets Black Americans with menthol products, contributing to the vast racial health disparities we see in this country today. Concerns about racial inequities in policing that might be triggered by this ban can and should be addressed through comprehensive criminal justice reform, not by allowing products that disproportionately harm youth and Black people to remain on the market.