Title: Have Rules On Minors Who Vape
Vaping has become a widespread trend among people of all ages, including minors. The lack of legislation governing the sale of vape products to children has resulted in a challenging situation for both vape shops and concerned citizens. Immediate guidelines and rules are necessary to address this issue and protect minors from the potential dangers of vaping.
One major difficulty faced by vape shops is the difficulty in differentiating between minors and adults. Without proper laws in place, shop assistants are unable to legally enforce age verification before selling vape products. This leads to a reliance on the judgment of the shop assistants or relying on customers to voluntarily prove their age. However, this can be confusing, as some young adults may still look like students while some minors may appear to be adults. This ambiguity creates an opportunity for underage individuals to access these products easily.
In order to address this issue effectively, the government should develop temporary measures for vape shops until proper legislation, such as the Generational Endgame (GEG) Bill, can be passed. These measures should aim to regulate the sale of vape products to minors and provide clear guidelines for self-regulation within vape shops. By implementing these measures, vape shops can actively prevent underage individuals from purchasing vape products, ensuring a safer environment for everyone.
Moreover, the issue of oversaturation in the vape market needs to be addressed. Not only are vape stores selling these products, but other non-vape stores and even restaurants are also offering them. This constant exposure increases the likelihood of young, curious students trying vaping out of curiosity. Regulating the supply of vape products and restricting their sale to authorized outlets can help curb this excessive exposure and prevent the easy access of these products by minors.
However, some argue for an immediate ban on all vape products to address the issue more effectively. They suggest that a ban would eliminate the need for complex regulations and enforcement measures. While this approach may have its merits, it is essential to consider the potential impact it may have on adult consumers who use vapes as a less harmful alternative to smoking. Balancing the need to protect minors while not unduly restricting the rights of adults should be a priority in any regulatory measures implemented.
The delay in passing the GEG Bill, which aims to restrict tobacco sales to the generation born after 2007, further exacerbates the issue. The Health Ministry must prioritize the second reading of the bill and swiftly address any concerns or barriers preventing its passage into law. Additionally, the exemption of nicotine liquids and gels as controlled substances under the Poisons Act 1952 needs to be reconsidered. This exemption has created a void in government regulation, leaving the industry unregulated and open to abuse.
In conclusion, it is crucial to have rules and regulations in place to protect minors from vaping. The government should work on developing immediate guidelines for vape shops to prevent the sale of these products to underage individuals. Simultaneously, efforts must be made to address the oversaturation of vape products in the market and regulate their supply. Striking a balance between protecting minors and respecting the rights of adult consumers is key to ensuring the health and well-being of future generations.