Last month, San Francisco’s supervisors approved a total e-cig ban in a unanimous preliminary vote. “We spent the 90s battling big tobacco, and now we see its new form in e-cigarettes,” said supervisor Shamann Walton. “This is about thinking about the next generation of users and thinking about protecting the overall health and sending a message to the rest of the state and the country: follow our lead,” added supervisor Ahsha Safaí.
There are a few months left before the ban comes into effect and there is at least one attempt to overturn it underway. However if things remain unchanged, the total e-cigarette ban will go into full effect in January next year.
Under the new legislation, it will be illegal for any retailers in San Francisco to sell vaping products, and for online vendors to ship them to addresses in the city, until the time the FDA officially reviews the products and grants them a Pre Market Tobacco Authorisation (PMTA). In the meantime the city’s residents will have to buy their devices and liquid, in neighbouring towns – or simply go back to smoking cigarettes, which ironically will remain on sale across the city.
E-cigs are forbidden but cigarettes are ok
“So let’s get his reasoning straight. He is saying that e-cigarettes shouldn’t even be on the market, but cigarettes should! This is contrary to every public health principle in the book.”
In response to this ban public health experts have voiced their concerns about the fact that other cities and counties may follow SF’s example and this could spell disaster for public health. “The San Francisco City Attorney argued that e-cigarettes are ‘a product that shouldn’t even be on the market’. So let’s get his reasoning straight. He is saying that e-cigarettes shouldn’t even be on the market, but cigarettes should! This is contrary to every public health principle in the book,” said public health expert Dr. Michael Siegel.
“We aim to help the public make healthier choices. Forcing them to consume the most deadly and toxic consumer product on the market is the last thing in the world that any policy maker concerned about public health should be doing,” added Siegel.
The 2nd city across the US and California to implement a ban
Subsequently as predicted, the East Bay city of Livermore has followed suit and last week became the second Californian city after San Francisco, to ban the sale of e-cigarettes. The Livermore City Council unanimously approved the bill, which will also go into effect on the 1st of January 2020.
Meanwhile, unlike the San Francisco ban, the Livermore legislation only bans the sales of e-cigarettes in brick-and-mortar stores, and the devices will remain available for sale online.
This legislation also establishes a tobacco licensing program for retailers, prohibiting stores from selling nicotine containing e-liquids, and bans all flavored tobacco products, including flavored cigarettes and cigars, with an exception for premium cigars. The Livermore bill also bans the sale of any tobacco products, like traditional cigarettes, within 1,000 feet of spaces often frequented by children, such as schools, libraries, parks, and day care centers.
Read Further: San Francisco Chronicle