|By State Rep. Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne)
The evidence is mounting about the negative health effects of vaping, which unfortunately is a growing trend among teenagers. Legislation is advancing in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives that would help to keep electronic, or e-cigarettes, and other vaping products out of the hands of young people.
E-cigarettes are used to deliver nicotine and other substances into the body in the form of a vapor. The vapors come in a variety of flavors, which increases their appeal to minors. Nearly three in five high school students use e-cigarettes, according to the U.S. Surgeon General.
House Bill 2226
would ban the sale of e-cigarettes and other nicotine delivery products to minors and would also prohibit them from purchasing such items.
The proposal would amend the Crimes Code, which makes it illegal to sell tobacco products to minors, by adding other “nicotine delivery products.” It would still be legal to sell e-cigarettes and vape pens in Pennsylvania – just not to children. A violation would be a summery offense.
A second bill would keep e-cigarettes out of Pennsylvania schools. House Bill 2268
, sponsored by Rep. Gerald Mullery (D-Luzerne), would ban e-cigarettes, cigars, snuff, chewing tobacco and other nicotine products on school property and school buses. A violation would be punishable as a summary offense with a fine not to exceed $50.
This week, both bills were unanimously approved by the House Judiciary Committee, of which I am a member. They will next be considered by the full House.
The companies that make these vaping products are targeting our kids without any regard for their health. It is imperative that we act now to decrease their use by young people.
Representative Tarah Toohil
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Contact: Rep. Toohil’s Office