Today, October 16th, 2017, two laws introduced by Harlem Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez to address the increasingly widespread use of non-tobacco shisha among New Yorkers were signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Bills 1076A and 1075A raised the age of use to 21 years old and now require signage displaying the risks of smoking hookah at establishments where hookah products are sold.
Hookah and cigarette smokers are exposed to many of the same health risks, including cancer, decreased lung function, and heart disease. Particles and toxicants released during its use also expose secondhand smokers to these risks.
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According to the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, use among middle school and high schools student in the city has increased between 2008 and 2014 making them more vulnerable to long-term tobacco addiction. Among Hispanic and black middle and high school students use has double and tripled, respectively, in that same period.