Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed legislation that bans the sale of e-cigarettes to minors. The new law also prohibits minors from using the products.
“This is an important step in protecting public health and keeping tobacco products out of the hands of our kids, but we have to keep working to ensure that minors don’t have access to any tobacco products, including harmful e-cigarettes,” Whitmer said in a news release.
Additional action that Whitmer proposed as a next step would be raising the age of tobacco sales to 21. This has already happened in several states and cities as a way to prevent adults aged 18 through 20 from purchasing tobacco for their underaged friends.
“[Future action] includes raising the legal age for purchasing these products to 21, curtailing internet sales of e-cigarettes, and banning the marketing of all tobacco products to children,” Whitmer said. “I’m ready to keep working with the legislature to make sure we’re doing everything we can to protect our kids and our public health.”
According to a news release, 21 percent of high school students and five percent of middle school students reported in a 2018 survey that they had used e-cigarettes or other vaping products within the last 30 days. This was an increase of about 78 percent from 2017.
E-cigarettes are available for purchase in several flavors that critics say might entice children, including fanta, fruit loops and nilla wafers.
For guidance on further regulating e-cigarettes, Whitmer asked the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to gather available information on the subject and to provide recommendations.