Posted on Apr 08, 2019, 6 p.m.
San Francisco has introduced legislation to ban the sale of electronic cigarettes; it proposes halting the sale of these products until the US FDA can properly evaluate their impact on public health which was never done that should have been before they hit the market, as reported in CBS News.
If this bill is approved it could be the first of such in all of the United States, and could inspire other cities to follow for the safety of public health, and would limit adult smokers access to e-cigarettes which may help them to kick the habit, according to anti-tobacco supporters.
City Attorney Dennis Herrera and Supervisor Shamann Walton also proposed a bill to prohibit all companies that make, sell, and distribute tobacco products such as e-cigarettes from occupying city owned property at a Board of Supervisors meeting. Tobacco companies are already forbidden from conducting business on city property, this bill would rightly add e-cigarettes to that ban.
Shamann Walton, former president of the San Francisco Board of Education says, “... people are addicted to nicotine who would have never smoked a cigarette had it not been for the attractive products that target our younger people…”
Global respiratory scientists and doctors have been warning of the dangers posed by e-cigarettes, and the have called for a ban on flavorings and misleading marketing calling them low risk alternatives. A growing body of evidence is mounting showing they are highly addictive and the gateway to regular smoking; exposure to the harmful ingredients may be less in e-cigs than traditional cigarettes but that does not mean they are harmless. Recent studies show the flavoring used which is safe for human use is altered during e-cig use and can become harmful to disrupt and impair lung function with there being growing evidence of harmful effects from surveillance of use across different countries.
San Francisco has been on the forefront in passing social policies that clash with big business interests from banning single use plastic bags to the sale of real fur products, now they are demanding the FDA conduct a proper investigation into e-cigarettes. The FDA has recently proposed guidelines giving companies until 2021 to submit applications for evaluation, restricting sales, and verification of age; manufacturers were supposed to have submitted products for review by 08/2018 but that was delayed by FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb until 2022 saying that more time was needed.
During 2018 upwards of 3.6 million children used e-cigarettes including 5% of middle schoolers (grades 6-8) and 21% of high schoolers (grades 9-12) according to the CDC.
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