Members of Toronto Board of Health unanimously support stricter vaping rules
In this Oct. 4, 2019 file photo, a woman is seen using an electronic cigarette. (AP / Tony Dejak, File)
Codi Wilson, CP24.com
Published Monday, December 9, 2019 1:39PM EST
Last Updated Monday, December 9, 2019 1:42PM EST
The Toronto Board of Health is supporting tighter rules around vaping, calling for the provincial and federal governments to take action to curb use of aerosolized liquid products, particularly among youth.
During Monday’s board of health meeting, members voted unanimously in favour of recommendations made in a recent Toronto Public Health report, which discussed ways to address the spike in vaping.
In the report, Toronto Public Health commended the province for its recent decision to ban in-store promotion of aerosolized liquid products, but said the move doesn’t go far enough.
The report went on to encourage all levels of government to ban the sale of all flavoured products, with the exception of tobacco, in retail stores that are accessible to minors.
“National surveys show there has been an increase in the use of aerosolized liquid products amongst youth. The recent increase and widespread availability of popular new brands in most convenience stores in Toronto, coupled with their pervasive advertising campaigns and unlimited promotion at retail outlets, may have played a role in the increasing use of these products amongst youth,” the report read.
“Additionally, there are a wide variety of flavours available at retail outlets, including candy and dessert flavours. Flavours were cited in a national survey as one of the main reasons youth initiated aerosolized liquid product use.”
Coun. Joe Cressy, who sits on the Toronto Board of Health, said all three levels of government must act quickly to deal with the situation.
“I think when e-cigarettes and vaping started, it was kind of seen as a novelty product and a harmless one and one that might actually help with smoking cessation,” Cressy said.
“But the more we learn, the worse it gets, and we discover in no way is it benign. In fact there are immediate harmful short-term effects that we are seeing around the world…If we do not act now, we risk undermining decades of effective tobacco control.”
The report also recommended that amendments be made to City of Toronto bylaws that prohibit smoking to include aerosolized liquid products as well.
“I actually think the policy solution that we are proposing here through this report is exactly what is needed,” Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto’s medical officer of health, said Monday.