Holbrook Students Prepare for Push to Limit Tobacco Products

Niall Horgan, News Editor

Students from The 84 Movement and Civics Club are preparing for their hearing with the Board of Health this winter. They will be testifying about tobacco industry tactics, attempting to pass a local policy that would restrict the sale of tobacco products to adult-only retailers, like tobacco shops or liquor stores.

The 84 Movement is an organization that fights against the tobacco industry. It is led by youth who are excited to join the fight and support their own communities. Natalie Vanatta, from The 84, came to teach Holbrook students about the industry’s tactics and strategies for local hearings.

Hayli Manning and Sarah Ryan, who are both on the Statewide Leadership Team, also helped facilitate the training. They said that it was a positive experience for both of them.

We are less about scare tactics and more about changing local policy and educating legislators.

— Sarah Ryan, Chapter President

Sarah Ryan is also the chapter president and she has been involved with the movement since her freshman year. When asked about her experience, she said, “I was working on substance abuse with Holbrook Cares and Mrs. Clougher invited me to Kick Butts Day, an 84 event.”

The trainers started with a tobacco trivia competition, showed them examples of tobacco products, and went over local policy ideas. When asked if the 84 was similar to the DARE program, Sarah Ryan said, “We are less about scare tactics and more about changing local policy and educating legislators.”

Next month, these students hope to make a change in this community. If the restriction is passed, it will significantly inhibit the ability of the tobacco industry to target youth.