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a sports fan sits alone in a stadium with a giant beer bottle hovering over itSTUDENTS SHOULD BE OFF-LIMITS TO ALCOHOL ADS

AB 840 is intended to suspend three-tier regulations and open up the sporting facilities of a large number of Cal State campuses to alcohol advertising.

AB 840's reckless strategy crosses multiple domains:

1) Unlike most deregulation, it selectively targets underage youth. By our conservative estimates, there are at least 180,000 Cal State students under the age of 21.

2) The scope of these exemptions is an extraordinary case of overreach. By ramping up alcohol advertising in nearly every campus, AB 840 is excusing local legislators of the obligation of making the request and opening themselves up to feedback from constituents.

3) The three-tier system exists for a reason: to prevent monopolization and corporate price controls that lead to the most harmful alcohol consumption patterns. By hurting Cal State students, this bill rewards the mega-corporations who least need a leg up.

4) Raising funds for education by selling a product that hurts or kills a significant number of students is self-defeating.

The consequences of youth consumption should be self-evident: alcohol-related fatalities (fatal accidents including motor vehicle crashes, suicides, and homicides) are the leading killers of youth ages 15-19 (CDC 2023) and 3 of the 4 leading causes of death for college students between 18 and 24 years of age (Turner 2013; the fourth cause on that list is cancer, some forms of which are also alcohol related).

The facts that exposure to advertising makes a child more likely to start drinking younger and increases the amount consumed when they do drink (Anderson et al., 2009; Smith & Foxcroft, 2009) is well established, and recent research suggests it may be associated with more binge drinking (Jernigan et al. 2017). The stature of California’s higher education system should be protected and nurtured. However, there is every reason to believe that increasing the penetration of alcohol corporations into student lives does the opposite.

California students deserve to be healthy, engaged, and alive. For this reason, we must demand that the legislature VOTE NO ON AB 840.