Garballey honored for antitobacco efforts, legislation

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State Rep. Sean Garballey (D-Arlington) has received the 2019 Massachusetts Distinguished Advocacy Award from the Cancer Action Network and American Cancer Society.

The award is given annually to someone who has made a significant contribution to the fight against cancer in the Commonwealth. Garballey received the award for his bill to ban tobacco sales in pharmacies, An Act restricting the sale of tobacco products at health care institutions.

This legislation became law last session, when it was included in the collaborative H.4486, An Act protecting youth from the health risks of tobacco and nicotine addiction. The bill, which passed last May, encompasses products derived from tobacco, as well as ones containing nicotine, for the purpose of human consumption. Stores prohibited from selling these products include health care institutions, pharmacies, opticians/optometrists, and drug stores. Massachusetts is the first state in the country to pass this law.

Garballey was honored with the award for his advocacy to continue the fight against cancer. He hopes this bill can deliver the intended results of lower rates of sales and usage rates.

“It is time to put an end to the terrible diseases that come from smoking and tobacco use,” Garballey said in an April 5 news release. “Almost every single one of us has watched a friend or family member struggle to quit have to deal with the lasting health effects. These issues can continue for months, years and sometimes even decades after quitting. It’s time that we help people kick the habit for good. The legislation that I passed with the help of my colleagues will hopefully give smokers the extra urge to stop for good.”

The award was presented during a ceremony March 28...

This news announcement was published Saturday, April 6, 2019.