New Saskatchewan vape regulations draw mixed reaction


Youth vaping charges in Saskatchewan are among the many highest in Canada.

In opposition to this backdrop, the province is introducing new measures in an try and curb these charges.

One measure coming into pressure on Sept. 1 is a ban on the sale of vape flavours, apart from tobacco, mint and menthol flavours, anyplace however in licensed specialty vape shops.

Whereas there’s consensus inside organizations that youth vaping must be curbed, some are questioning if the federal government has gone too far — or not far sufficient — with the measures.

The Lung Affiliation of Saskatchewan was searching for a full ban on the promoting of all vape flavours, apart from tobacco, in comfort shops.

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“We know that that flavoured products absolutely target kids,” stated Jennifer Could, vice-president of well being promotion and authorities relations with the Lung Affiliation of Saskatchewan.

Could pointed to a research from Coronary heart and Stroke on youth vaping. That research states that “nine in 10 ( 92%) young people cite flavours as an important reason why they started vaping and the same number (90%) say it is an important factor for continuing to do so.”

Anne Kothawala agrees that one thing must be finished about youth vaping.

Nevertheless, she calls the ban on flavours in comfort shops a “red herring” that may do nothing to scale back youth vaping charges.

“If you look at when the minister made the announcement, he specifically talked about flavours like ice cream. Flavours like ice cream or cotton candy or unicorn flavours are not flavours that you could ever purchase at a convenience store,” stated Kothawala, the president and CEO of the Comfort Business Council of Canada.

“To be clear, we want a restricted number. We’re not asking to be able to sell hundreds of flavours of vape. We just know that there are a few select, maybe five, six, maximum eight flavours that we know our adult smoking customers, who choose to make that transition, want to be able to buy.”

New Saskatchewan rules received’t tackle youth vaping points: CICC

New Saskatchewan rules received’t tackle youth vaping points: CICC

The Canadian Vaping Affiliation, then again, applauds the choice to limit flavoured vape to specialty vape shops.

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The affiliation’s govt director, Darryl Tempest, stated this isn’t an assault on comfort shops.

“What Saskatchewan has done here is they said, ‘OK, we’re trying to balance regulation, we’re trying to ensure that adults have access while restricting the access points,’” stated Tempest.

“Trying to ensure that you don’t get access to this product is really important.”

That included taking measures to limit entry to youth earlier than any rules had been introduced in, Tempest stated.

“It was the vape shops that in advance of any regulation said ‘age-of-majority only,’” he stated.

“Restricting access will be key over the short term.”

Kothawala stated whereas the CVA makes a sound argument, she stated vape shops don’t have the identical observe file as comfort shops in promoting restricted merchandise, citing tobacco and lottery tickets as examples.

She stated there is no such thing as a proof pointing to comfort shops as the issue for youth accessing vape merchandise.

“Nobody has presented that evidence, not one single government, nobody has said we have a problem with you,” Kothawala stated. “We know what we’re doing and our business depends on it. We are responsible businesses operating in our communities.”

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On-line market

A rising concern for each the Lung Affiliation and the CICC is the net market.

The priority for Could is that there aren’t any checks and balances in that market, particularly in the case of age verification.

International Information is aware of of at the very least one case the place vaping merchandise had been delivered to a house in Saskatoon, and no age verification was finished.

What Could would love is for Saskatchewan to comply with Quebec’s lead and ban the net sale of vape merchandise.

“We have a school that said that they were finding prepaid Visa cards by the handfuls in their garbage in the computer room,” she stated. “What they determined was kids were using those prepaid Visa cards to purchase online vape products and then getting them delivered while their parents were at work.”

Complete flavour ban solely approach to tackle youth vaping: Lung Affiliation of Saskatchewan

Complete flavour ban solely approach to tackle youth vaping: Lung Affiliation of Saskatchewan

Kothawala stated the dearth of third-party verification is the most important drawback, as that’s the place youth are in a position to buy these merchandise, however shutting down the market may be going too far.

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“When you think of people that are living in rural Saskatchewan, they don’t have a vape shop around the corner and now they’re not going to be able to purchase perhaps a fruit flavour at their convenience store. So they are, in fact, going to have to rely on the online market,” she stated.

“So I think if we went too far on the online market, we’d be punishing some of those adult smokers that have made the switch.”

Whether or not or not the product is available, Tempest stated youth will nonetheless get their arms on it.

He likened it to youth getting somebody who’s the age of majority to buy tobacco or alcohol for them.

“The kids are experimenting with it. Kids experiment with smokes. They experiment with drinking. They experiment, that’s what you do as a kid,” he stated.

“So we have this pathway where we’re talking about youth experimentation, so we need to kill the category.”

Grownup conversations

Tempest stated the one factor lacking in any dialogue is grownup people who smoke who select to vape as a method of hurt discount.

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He stated vaping is twice as efficient as some other nicotine alternative product available on the market in serving to folks give up smoking.

“It’s completely asinine, to be honest, because the thought process here is we’re going to take something that’s so successful to get people off of smoking and we’re going to remove it under this whole concept that youth are experimenting with it,” he stated.

“Let’s have a real conversation and allow adults to do something that’s going to reduce their harm greatly, specifically around a government push to harm reduction, where we’re decriminalizing so many elements in our society, but we’re criminalizing something that is 90 to 95 per cent less harmful in its entirety (than smoking.)”

Experimentation driving youth vaping charges: Canadian Vaping Affiliation

Experimentation driving youth vaping charges: Canadian Vaping Affiliation

Could takes subject with Tempest’s assertion, saying the CVA isn’t allowed to make claims their merchandise assist cessation.

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She stated research present that 84 per cent of vapers are underneath the age of 25 and that youth who vape are 4 instances extra more likely to begin smoking.

“It is not a harm reduction adult issue like they’re trying to sell us. If the vape industry is so confident that their product will help support cessation, I welcome them to go to Health Canada and apply to become an approved smoking cessation aid. To date, not one company has done that, not one,” she stated.

“So what this tells me is that they’ve just been kind of living in a wild west of freedom. Quite frankly, it’s about time governments are now standing up and putting some regulations around this product.”

In a joint submission to Saskatchewan’s well being minister on flavoured vape merchandise in 2020, the Lung Affiliation cited statistics stating 30 per cent of Saskatchewan youth reported vaping over a 30-day interval in 2019.

Of these youth, 18 per cent of scholars in grades 7-9 stated they throughout that time-frame, with the quantity rising to 40 per cent of youth in grades 10-12, in accordance with the Lung Affiliation.

Advocacy in opposition to youth vaping

The Lung Affiliation began a brand new marketing campaign two years in the past — youth for change.

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Could stated it has been lively in educating the federal government about vape merchandise and advocating for modifications in accessibility to them.

“They are going to continue to fight the vape flavours campaign that we want to see in Saskatchewan, a full ban on flavours,” she stated.

“It’s a youth and young adult issue. Let’s start treating it as such and really start looking at the information that we have in front of us, not what industry is telling us.”

© 2021 International Information, a division of Corus Leisure Inc.

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