B.C. moves to restrict e-cigarettes

Health Minister Terry Lake says ban on sales to minors and 'vaping' in workplaces and public buildings in effect in a year

E-cigarettes can be disposable like this one costing about $10

The B.C. government is tightening its regulations to ban the sale of electronic cigarettes to minors and use of the smoking substitute in workplaces, restaurants and other indoor public spaces.

Health Minister Terry Lake said changes he introduced in the B.C. legislature Thursday will treat the battery-powered devices like tobacco products, meaning they may not be displayed in stores or used in enclosed spaces where others are present. That will include private vehicles with children inside.

Lake said he expects the new regulations to be in effect within a year, after consulting with the industry and giving sellers time to adjust to the new rules.

“This doesn’t ban e-cigarettes,” Lake said. “This means that children are protected from the sale and from being exposed to e-cigarettes, and those who don’t want to be subjected to the vapours from e-cigarettes are protected as well.

“Essentially the same conditions that now apply to tobacco will apply to e-cigarettes, so in public  places, indoor workplaces, school grounds and now health authorities as well.”

Lake said e-cigarettes may have potential as a quit-smoking aid, but they are currently unregulated and the liquid used in them may contain nicotine or other chemicals with health risks. The federal government has banned the sale of so-called “e-juice” containing nicotine, but it remains legal in the U.S. and Health Canada has received numerous reports that it is sold north of the border as well.

There have also been reports of sales to minors as young as 11.

NDP health critic Judy Darcy said she supports the restriction on e-cigarettes, but the lack of measures to prohibit flavoured tobacco products is “a gaping hole” in the government’s bill.

Lake said he has been assured by federal Health Minister Rona Ambrose that federal regulations are in the works to deal with flavoured tobacco.

“When you’re talking about the manufacture of cigars and cigarettes, it’s better to do that at a federal level, because obviously they’re not made in each individual province,” Lake said.

B.C.’s proposed legislation is here.

 

Just Posted

Find out what the tax increase will be in your area of the Tri-Port

The Gazette reached out to all three communities financial departments requesting numbers to crunch

Tree falls inches away from Port Hardy home

The tree narrowly missed the residence on Wolleson Street

Port Hardy firefighters to earn money for calls

Council has approved a Fire Department Remuneration policy

A memorial mural will be painted in Port Hardy

The mural will honour lives lost to substance abuse and mental health

VIDEO: North Island Local Hero Awards 2018

On the North Island, we are blessed with many different kinds of heroes.

Trans Mountain pipeline: How we got here

A look at the Kinder Morgan expansion, decades in the making

B.C. VIEWS: Our poverty reduction plan is already in place

NDP has another promise it needs to appear to keep

WestJet pilot strike averted as parties agree to mediation

Pilots had warned they could go on strike starting May 19

Out of control wildfire prompts restriction around Allie Lake

One of the first large wildfires of the 2018 season is blazing out of control

Passersby help rescue occupants of home as fire breaks out in Courtenay

Coffee run turns into fire rescue for pair of men

Giant beer tanks arrive in new B.C. home city

Molson Coors tanks finish river journey and move to overland trip in Chilliwack

VIDEO: Pipeline supporters rally across B.C.

Langley event one of five held in B.C.

VIDEO: B.C. woman praises burn fund after boat explosion in 1978

White Rock woman was 16 years old when she was left with second- and third-degree burns

Most Read