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Canadian Cancer Society calls for immediate government action against youth vaping in new video prior to Legislative Assembly Session

24 February 2020

Halifax, Nova Scotia -

The Canadian Cancer Society released a video today (see here), with a clear message: governments need to do more to address youth vaping and increasing the minimum age to 21 is a strong start. “Vaping rates in this province are reaching epidemic levels. We need government to take strong immediate action by passing a suite of comprehensive measures designed to reduce vaping rates amongst youth,” says Kelly Cull, Regional Director of Public Policy.

March 10 marks the opening of the Third Session of the 59th Legislative Assembly in New Brunswick. Government has an opportunity to highlight the ongoing tobacco epidemic and create effective policies and programs that will promote healthier lifestyles and protect the next generation of Canadians.

Effective action on vaping must include key policy measures, such as raising the minimum age for e-cigarettes and tobacco to 21, restricting e-cigarette sales to adult-only locations, and removing flavours from e-cigarettes, amongst others. Recently, Prince Edward Island adopted legislation to increase the minimum smoking and vaping age to 21 and restrict sales of e-cigarettes to adult-only locations. Last month, Nova Scotia announced regulations to eliminate the sale of flavoured e-cigarettes by April 1, 2020.

A 2018 study, led by Professor David Hammond of the University of Waterloo, found that among those 16-19 years old, vaping increased by a stunning 74% from 2017 to 2018, from 8.4% to 14.6%. “The e-cigarette industry has designed a persuasive and enticing market for youth, and the growing use and popularity of vaping products is a direct threat to the progress made in tobacco control,” says Cull. “Governments have an opportunity to stem the tide of this growing crisis, and we urge them to act swiftly and decisively.”

Tobacco is the leading cause of preventable disease and death in Canada, which is why CCS urges the provincial government to adopt a minimum age of 21. The vast majority of smokers begin smoking before the age of 19 and many of them get and stay addicted. A recent report by the Institute of Medicine concluded that increasing the minimum tobacco sales age to 21 in the U.S. would reduce smoking rates among 15 to 17-year-olds by 25%, and among 18 and 19-year-olds by 15%.

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The Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) is the only national charity that supports Canadians with all cancers in communities across the country. No other organization does what we do; we are the voice for Canadians who care about cancer. We fund groundbreaking research, provide a support system for all those affected by cancer and advocate to governments for important social change.

Help us make a difference. Call 1-888-939-3333 or visit cancer.ca today.

For more information, please contact:

Kelly Cull

Regional Director, Public Policy

Phone: (902) 470-2040