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Tobacco Education Coalition (TEC)

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Reduce youth access to tobacco
by limiting the sale of
flavored tobacco products

Haga clic aquí para ver este sitio web en español

Hold Big Tobacco
responsible for their
toxic tobacco waste


Are you concerned about new tobacco products
like electronic cigarettes?



Tired of seeing cigarette butts everywhere you look?


Worried about tobacco companies targeting our children
with their deadly, addictive products?


You've Come to the Right Place!

The Santa Cruz County Tobacco Education Coalition (TEC) is a community group that advocates for a tobacco-free lifestyle and environment. The Coalition was formed in 1985 and is funded by Propositions 99 and 56 (sales taxes on cigarettes) and staffed by the Santa Cruz County Health Services Agency. The Coalition is open to all community members and currently includes parents, youth advocates, environmentalists, health professionals, and others who want to live in a tobacco and smoke-free community. Together, we are working to:

  • Educate about the dangers of tobacco, tobacco waste and second-hand smoke.
  • Reduce youth access to tobacco.
  • Advocate for non-smokers rights.
  • Collaborate with local policy makers to pass tobacco-related policies.
  • Maintain compliance with smoke-free workplace laws.
  • Train and Engage diverse members of the Santa Cruz community to participate in tobacco control activities.
The Coalition has made significant and lasting changes in our community.  In 2018-2019 we worked with the cities of Capitola, Santa Cruz and Watsonville, and the County Unincorporated Area, to ban the sale of flavored tobacco products (such as e-cigarettes). Prior to that, we worked with local elected officials to pass tobacco retail license (TRL) ordinances in the five jurisdictions in Santa Cruz County. We also helped change the legal definition of smoking in all local ordinances to include e-cigarettes. So anywhere you’re not allowed to smoke, you’re not allowed to vape!


Get Involved!

Meet other people who are concerned about tobacco issues. Share information and resources. Make a difference in our community. Join the Coalition!

Due to COVID-19, the Coalition meets virtually, every other month, on the third Wednesday from 9:30 to 11 a.m. Call 454-5412 for more information.

2022 Coalition Meeting Dates

  • January 19  
  • March 16 
  • May 18
  • July 20   
  • September 21  
  • November 16

Tobacco Resources


Santa Cruz and Watsonville Pass Tobacco Waste Resolutions!

In 2021, both the Santa Cruz and Watsonville City Councils passed a Resolution Recognizing Tobacco Waste as a Public Health and Environmental Threat. The Councils resolved to "advance policy approaches to reduce or eliminate this toxic waste in our community."  

Thank you to council members for their leadership!


TEC Mission Statement

The Santa Cruz County Tobacco Education Coalition (TEC) is committed to promoting and advocating a tobacco-free lifestyle and environment at the local, state, and national levels. We empower our communities to effect individual and social change through education, advocacy, collaboration, and coordination of resources.  The Coalition recognizes individual rights and cultural traditions, while encouraging community responsibility and involvement.



Report Smoking Violations
(831) 454-4319

If you want to make a complaint about a smoking violation inside a building, call (831) 454-4319 or fill out this electronic form.

Tobacco Retail Licenses (TRL)
Looking for information about how to obtain a Tobacco Retailer’s License? Click here.


Contact Us

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