Since 1995, The We Card Program and its supporters have been working to prevent the underage sale of age-restricted products like tobacco and alcohol. When We Card first started, retail compliance was a problem with underage purchase attempts successful around 40% of the time. Now – 26 years later – that same rate is 9.6%.

But while numerous organizations have been working to reduce retail underage access, we’ve seen a continual increase in underage youth getting access by bumming, borrowing or getting someone to buy it for them. This is called “social sourcing”, and there’s no coordinated action to address this increase.

Instead, this social sourcing problem remains unchecked, and it represents 80% to 90% of the ways underage youth obtain access to tobacco and vapor products.

The We Card Program is launching a campaign to support retailers, educate the public and prevent underage access. There are several key components to our efforts:


  • Take steps to address the Adult-For-Underage Purchase issue
  • Engage multiple audiences to participate in raising awareness and creating solutions
  • Encourage other organizations to take on the issue and take positive steps to address it
  • Use digital and social media to reach adult consumers, retailers and related stakeholders. 

We hope you join us to tackle this problem AND be comfortable saying NO when someone under 21 asks you to buy or give them tobacco or vaping products.