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article imageU.S. bill would ban marketing, sale of e-cigarettes to children

By Michael Thomas     Mar 19, 2015 in Health
A group of U.S. senators is proposing a law banning the marketing and selling of e-cigarettes to children. A recent study showed buying the products is easy for minors.
The legislation is called the Stop Selling and Marketing to Our Kids E-Cigarettes (SMOKE) Act, created by congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-California) and five co-sponsors.
Consumerist reports the bill would direct the Federal Drug Administration to establish:
  • Childproof packaging standards
  • Dosage limits
  • Nicotine concentration level maximums
  • Nicotine concentration labeling requirement
As well, the Federal Trade Commission would designate as unfair or deceptive any advertising that promotes e-cigarette usage to children. This means the FTC and state attorney generals can prosecute companies found to be in violation of the new guidelines.
"E-Cigarette makers think they can take us back to the days of Joe Camel," Speier said in a statement. "The SMOKE Act would establish that e-cigarettes are for adults, not minors, and it would ensure they are safely regulated and packaged so that they can’t harm children."
The bill comes weeks after a new study published in JAMA proved that teens can easily buy e-cigarettes online. The study found that 94 percent of attempts to buy them were successful, with only five of 98 attempts rejected because of the age of the purchaser.
When the packages were delivered, none of the 11 teens supervised under the study were asked to show ID — in fact, 95 percent were just left at their doorstep.
The findings are slightly troubling considering 41 states have banned the sale of e-cigarettes to minors.
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