Michigan becomes the first state to ban flavored e-cigarettes for minors starting today.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has been making a push to get nicotine out of teens hands. She has publicly stated several times the importance of making sure non-traditional nicotine products are not sold to young people.

Back in June, she signed a bill making it illegal to sell e-cigarettes to minors.

She cited a study that showed just last year, 21 percent of American high school students and 5 percent of middle school students — we are talking children as young as 12 – reported having used e-cigarettes or other vape products within a 30-day period.

Governor Whitmer stressed flavored e-cigarettes attract the youth with flavor names like Fruit Loops or Fanta. Her office provided these examples of vaping products marketed towards kids:

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She called this a “public health crisis.”

Just last week, the state health department said it’s investigating six cases of e-cigarettes or vaping-associated respiratory illnesses . All six cases were diagnosed in the past two months; all were reported in the Lower Pennisula.

The health department is investigating but hasn’t identified a specific brand or device related to these illnesses.

The Governor’s office recently released this statement regarding the ban:

Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer took aggressive action to protect Michigan kids from the harmful effects of vaping. These actions include making Michigan the first state in the nation to ban flavored nicotine vaping products.

On June 4 of this year, Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bills 106 and 155, which clarify that it is illegal to sell e-cigarettes and other non-traditional nicotine products to minors. In her signing message to the Legislature, Governor Whitmer criticized the legislation for not going far enough to protect Michigan’s kids from nicotine addiction, calling the marketing, packaging, and taste of e-cigarettes a “bait-and-switch” engineered to “create new nicotine addicts.”

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel praised Whitmer’s ban calling it a “bold move” by declaring a “public health emergency and putting in place emergency rules that ban flavors in nicotine vaping products to better protect the state’s children from addiction:

“With a more than 1.5 million increase in the number of students using vaping products in just one year, the governor’s emergency actions today are exactly the bold measures we must take to protect Michigan’s children from the dangerous effects of vaping.
“I commend the governor’s decision and pledge my department’s continued and shared commitment to keeping these products out of the hands of our kids.”

Original article can be found here: https://www.wxyz.com/news/michigan-becomes-first-state-to-ban-flavored-e-cigarettes-today