Toronto, January 17th 2022– This January 17th to 23rd is Canada’s national non-smoking week, and the Vaping Industry Trade Association recognizes the unique strain and challenges that our healthcare professionals and institutions continue to face. The impact of the ongoing situation continues to affect the physical and mental health of Canadians, many of whom are former smokers that have switched to vaping as a proven harm reduction alternative to smoking. With over 1 million adult Canadians vaping instead of smoking, the proposed federal ban on non-tobacco/menthol flavours would remove 85% of the products they rely on, resulting in disastrous consequences. VITA is urging Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos to consult with industry and consumers, and to consider alternative approaches.
In Nova Scotia, the prohibition of non-tobacco/menthol flavoured vaping products combined with Covid-19 restrictions appear to be driving factors in an otherwise unusual increase in tobacco consumption. With over 4 million Canadian smokers leading to more than fourty thousand preventable deaths a year, new and innovative approaches that reduce the harm and burden on the healthcare system are more important than ever.
“Quitting smoking is hard, that’s why we still have over 4 million smokers in Canada despite it being common knowledge that smoking is the leading cause of preventable death and disease globally. There is no ‘magic bullet’ solution, but smokers have access to more tools and resources than ever before. Nicotine replacement therapies like patches and gum are one tool, smoking cessation treatments and support are another, and for those who can’t or won’t kick the habit, reduced harm vaping products are another game-changing tool”, says VITA president Daniel David.
Let’s remember the facts :
- Public Health institutions such as the UK Royal College of Physicians have shown that vaping products represent 5% or less of the harm compared to smoking tobacco.
- Health Canada states: “Vaping is less harmful than smoking. Many of the toxic and cancer-causing chemicals in tobacco and the tobacco smoke form when tobacco is burned. Vaping products do not: produce smoke, contain tobacco, involve burning”.
- Proposed regulations could see those very Canadians turning to unregulated products from the illicit market or return to smoking, which fills our hospitals and claims the lives of so many Canadians each year. (To watch VITA’s Illicit Market Video: https://youtu.be/5UBkiPcqxvw)
VITA and it’s members share the concerns of government and parents regarding minors using vaping products and are committed to working with policy makers and enforcement towards finding effective, evidence based, and proportionate solutions.
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