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New legislation introduced for tobacco free baseball in California

NORTH COAST - Chewing tobacco has been associated with baseball for many of years, but new legislation in California could change that. 

In an effort to protect the health of players and set an effective example for children, California assemblyman Tony Thurmond has introduced legislation for baseball to become tobacco free. Public health advocates and youth baseball players started the campaign "Knock Tobacco out of the Park" in support of the legislation.

If passed, it would completely eliminate the use of all tobacco products from baseball venues including, major and minor leagues, organized leagues and interscholastic and intramural programs.

"Smoking rates have slowly decreased among young people, but the rates of chewing tobacco, have not. And it's believed that many young people think that it's healthier in some fashion but it really, is not. So this legislation goes back to the possibility to eliminate that and I think it will make baseball an even better and healthier game," said Mike Goldsby, Senior Program Manager at the Department of Health and Human Services Public Health Division.

In addition, the Humboldt Crabs baseball program is ahead of the game by being tobacco free since 2005.