Ten Wyndham businesses have been fined $645 each for selling tobacco to children in the past year.

During a council operation earlier this month, test buyers visited 22 sites and four of those tobacco outlets sold cigarettes to minors.

Safer communities portfolio holder Kim McAliney said while most tobacconists requested identification at the point of sale, there were still some breaking the law by failing to ask the question of young customers.

“Once interviewed – and ultimately fined – the store assistants who sold tobacco to children all said the same thing, that they looked over 18,” Cr McAliney said.

“That’s why I would like to stress to sellers of tobacco products, that if anyone looks under the age of 25, identification should be requested.”

Cr McAliney said banning the sale of cigarettes to children was a way to eradicate the “harmful habit in our community”.

“We need to protect the health of our children, so if you see kids purchasing tobacco please do not be a passive bystander and let us know about it,” she said.

“To clamp down on the illegal sale of tobacco products, we are conducting several covert operations where young tobacco test purchase assistants are sent into stores to buy tobacco.

“We know that increased legislation governing tobacco products and smoking continues to contribute to the decline of smoking rates in Victoria.”

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