With growing concern about the increased use of a e-cigarettes among young people and children, Cancer Council SA was pleased to see the Federal Government announce stronger action to ban illegal sales of e-cigarettes in Australia last month and prevent a new generation of Australians from becoming addicted to nicotine.
One of Cancer Council SA’s major advocacy priorities is vaping due to the significant risk it presents to young people and our community generally. We are pleased to see Governments move in the right direction after our hard work and sustained advocacy in this area.
E-cigarettes are not harmless. There are over 200 chemicals in a standard e-cigarette, some of which are carcinogenic.
Currently in South Australia, it is illegal to sell e-cigarettes that contain nicotine without a prescription, but we know that thousands are sold every day in a variety of places across South Australia.
The new changes announced by the Federal Government in May will see tougher border controls to stop illegal importation of all non-prescription e-cigarettes, and a ban on illegal retail sales of disposable e-cigarettes.
Cancer Council SA Prevention and Advocacy Manager Christine Morris says that the increasing rate of e-cigarette use in the community, especially amongst young people, is concerning and Cancer Council SA welcomes the Government’s commitment to protect young people from the harms of e-cigarettes.
“We know that young people who vape are around three times more likely to take up smoking than non-vapers so we welcome stronger action to protect young South Australians from the risk of nicotine addiction,” Christine says.
“Our hope is that the announcement strengthens the bans around vaping use in Australia, and also stops the increased use of e-cigarettes in young people protecting them from harm now and into the future.”
Enforcement of these laws is important, and Cancer Council SA has called for an increase in baseline funding in the State budget for compliance officers in the Department for Health and Wellbeing to enforce relevant tobacco and electronic cigarette legislation in South Australia.
Parents or people needing help to quit vaping can contact Cancer Council’s Quitline on 13 78 48 for support.
Learn more about e-cigarettes and the current legislation in South Australia here.