MONMOUTH COUNTY – The Freehold Regional Excessive Faculty District is now considered one of practically 130 districts throughout the nation to affix a class-action lawsuit in opposition to e-cigarette producer Juul.
The lawsuit alleges that the corporate’s youth-oriented advertising and promotion as a safer different to cigarettes has led to widespread vaping for teenagers.
The varsity district states that Juul’s misleading advertising to teenagers and younger adults has created a public well being disaster in its six colleges. In accordance with courtroom paperwork, this has resulted in “significant and unexpected levels of time and resources on addressing the pervasiveness of youth e-cigarette use.”
As well as, the varsity district states that they’ve devoted vital quantities of money and time coaching college and employees to teach college students on the risks of vaping by way of numerous applications.
“Students in schools have openly used e-cigarette devices in classrooms, causing disruption and diverting staff resources away from classroom instruction. Other students, addicted to nicotine, have demonstrated anxious, distracted and acting out behaviors, causing disruption and diverting staff resources away from classroom instruction and requiring additional time and attention for addicted students,” the grievance reads.
Freehold Regional Excessive Faculty District reported that they’ve seen a steady enhance in teen e-cigarette use. The FDA states that in 2020, roughly one in 5 highschool college students and one in 20 center faculty college students recognized as an e-cigarette person (or 3.6 million preteens and youths).
In accordance with courtroom paperwork, the varsity district alleges that “many students use their e-cigarette devices with high frequency throughout the day; with some kids taking a puff as often as every few minutes.”
“Unlike a combustible cigarette with its telltale emissions of smoke and distinct smell, the Juul device and Juul-alikes allow kids to vape undetected behind closed doors and even behind their teachers’ backs in the classroom,” courtroom paperwork learn.
The lawsuit additionally argues that Juul will not be a product adults use to give up smoking, however as a substitute is a tool used primarily by teenagers. The varsity district’s grievance in opposition to Juul additionally states that the corporate’s try to market e-cigarettes as a “safe” and “healthier” different to smoking, subsequently normalized an “unhealthy” product.
The varsity district has run into many different issues concerning Juuls that embody: the superintendent, assistant superintendents, principals, assistant principals, lecturers and safety personnel shedding substantial personnel hours to cope with e-cigarette points; investing time and sources into monitoring bogs the place college students typically use e-cigarettes; and take away bogs in bogs the place college students typically flushed e-cigarettes and brought about injury to the bogs, costing the district time, labor and substitute half prices.
As well as, the varsity district states that roughly 40 to 100 new safety cameras have been put in per faculty round 2018, every safety digicam costing round $300 to buy, set up and keep. About three vape detectors per faculty have additionally been put in, every vape detector costing about $1,500 for a similar preliminary buy, set up and maintenance.
With Freehold Regional Excessive Faculty District containing over 10,000 college students, the e-cigarette epidemic should proceed to be on excessive alert if it’s not stopped.
A spokesperson from Juul acknowledged the corporate has “reduced its product portfolio, halted television, print, and digital product advertising and submitted a Premarket Tobacco Product Application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration including comprehensive scientific evidence to support the harm reduction potential of its products and data-driven measures to address underage use.”
They’ve additionally mentioned that their “customer base is the world’s 1 billion adult smokers.”