FOR IMMEDIATE PUBLICATION
Sunday 5 July 2020
Media reports that school students are purchasing nicotine vaping products and have created an illegal vaping black market is of huge concern to Australian vape retailers.
Australian Retail Vaping Industry Association (ARVIA) spokesperson Russell Zimmerman said that these reports showed the need for harsher penalties and stronger and more effective regulations in Australia, similar to New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
ARVIA has always maintained that vaping products regardless of whether they contain nicotine should not be sold or marketed to young people, just as traditional cigarettes are not.
This issue is of huge concern given that vaping products and e-cigarettes are 95% less harmful than conventional tobacco and provide the best chance for lifelong smokers to quit an unhealthy habit.
The fact that all states and territories already have laws aimed at preventing underage sales shows that they are not being enforced and also shows that outright prohibition of nicotine vaping is not the answer.
We therefore call for significantly harsher penalties to crack down, deter and punish anyone who engages in underage and unregulated vaping sales.
Australian specialist vape retailers are hard-working and law abiding small businesses that pay taxes and create local jobs and are frustrated by the lack of effective regulations to prevent illegal vaping sales.
Such is the seriousness that the industry takes this issue that ARVIA has developed a Vape Industry Code of Conduct as part of their commitment to create a strong, well regulated and ethical vape industry to help more Australians quit smoking.
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