Two Newton convenience stores were recently fined after they failed a tobacco compliance check conducted by the city's Health & Human Services Department.
According to a press release issued by the Health & Human Services Department, 128 Gas, 8 Circumferential Highway, and , 2101 Commonwealth Ave., each sold tobacco to a customer under the age of 18.
There were a total of nine stores checked in Newton, the press release said.
“Selling cigarettes to kids is a violation of our ordinances that we take very seriously,” Newton Commissioner of Health and Human Services Dori Zaleznik, MD, said in the press release. “We know how hard it is for anyone to quit smoking, and the best thing is never to start. We want to do everything we can to prevent kids from starting to smoke.”
The seven Newton stores where the clerk did not sell to the minor included:
- CVS, 241 Needham St.
- , 325 Boylston St.
- , 732 Beacon St.
- , 747 Beacon St.
- , 1247 Centre St.
- , 1365 Centre St.
- , 2040 Commonwealth Ave
During a tobacco compliance check, a customer between the age of 15 1/2-17 enters the store and tries to buy cigarettes. If the store clerk sells to that minor, the youth leaves the store and an adult enforcement agent issues a violation notice and a fine, the press release said.
If the clerk does not sell to the minor, nothing happens.
“I commend the stores that did not sell to the minor and hope they will keep up the good work,” Zaleznik said in the press release.
This is the first time tobacco compliance checks have been done in Newton since 2009, as previously cut grant funding was recently restored.
According to the press release, the Newton Health & Human Services Department is collaborating with the health departments in Arlington, Belmont, Brookline and Watertown and the Massachusetts Tobacco Control Program on a variety of tobacco prevention efforts.