“My first priority is to safeguard the health of all Oregonians,” said Brown. “By keeping potentially unsafe products off of store shelves and out of the hands of Oregon’s children and youth, we prevent exposing more people to potentially dangerous chemical compounds and help lessen the chance of further tragedy for any other Oregon family.”

The ban will be valid for six months and urges state agencies to develop a plan for warning labels, ingredient disclosures, product safety testing and a campaign to discourage vaping. Brown inaccurately said that the safest option for Oregonians who use tobacco or cannabis is to avoid vaping altogether.

“Until we know more about what is causing this illness, please, do not vape,” she said referring to infamous cases of “vape-related” lung disease. “Encourage your friends and family members to stop vaping immediately. Talk to your children about the dangers of vaping. The risks are far too high.”

The real epidemic

Washington, New York, Michigan, Rhode Island and Montana have also announced temporary bans on flavoured vaping products.

Sadly, Brown’s advice is misguided. As renowned public health expert Dr. Michael Siegel has pointed out in one of his blogs, while bans are being implemented towards regulated vaping products, which are successfully being used by many adults as smoking cessation tools, authorities have long been referring to the increase in vaping as an “epidemic”, while disregarding the fact that the real epidemic lies in the consumption of illicit products.

As the number of vaping-related illness cases has now surpassed 1000, a number of US states and localities have been implementing e-cig bans. Washington, New York, Michigan, Rhode Island and Montana have announced temporary bans on flavoured vaping products, while last month, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, urged the public health council to set in place a four month statewide ban on the sales of all vaping devices.

NNA: Vaping bans are detrimental to public health

Meanwhile in the UK, the New Nicotine Alliance (NNA) has long pointed out how the use of safer nicotine products can benefit public health. In a recent article on its website, the organization referred to the local smoking ban implemented in 2007, explaining how as a result of it smokers are now aware of harming those around them, but also believe that their habit is detrimental to their health. Therefore added the NNA, when similar bans are imposed on safer alternatives, it sends the wrong message to the public.

“The NNA has argued against this huge downside to arbitrary – and often lazy – vaping bans consistently in the past few years to anyone who will listen. We gave evidence to MPs to that effect as well as urging public health groups supportive of reduced risk products to consider the negative connotations that such bans can have on the public’s understanding and to do more to counteract it.”

Read Further: OPB

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In-house journalist covering international vaping news.