House Unanimously Approves Rapp Bill to Add Pennsylvania to List of States Banning E-Cigarette Sales to Minors

A young female smoking an e-cigarette.

A young female smoking an e-cigarette.

HARRISBURG — Legislation sponsored by Rep. Kathy Rapp (R-Warren/Crawford/Forest) that would make Pennsylvania the next state to prohibit the sale of electronic cigarettes and other related “vaping” products to minors (House Bill 954) unanimously passed the state House today.

“According to the latest data there are more than 16 million children ages 17 and under living in 10 states where they can purchase e-cigarettes almost as easily as a pack of gum or a candy bar,” said Rapp. “It is imperative that the Legislature act now to add Pennsylvania to the list of 40 other states that have already taken the necessary steps to keep e-cigarettes, e-cigars and all other similar adult-only products out of our children’s hands by adopting House Bill 954.”

House Bill 954 would add “nicotine delivery products” to the list of tobacco products that are illegal to sell to minors, including electronic cigarettes. It would still be legal to sell e-cigarettes and vape pens in Pennsylvania – just not to children. The penalties would be the same as under current law for selling cigarettes and other traditional tobacco products to minors.

“E-cigarettes,” sometimes known as “vape pens,” are used to deliver nicotine and other substances into the body in the form of a vapor. The products come in a variety of flavors and generally resemble the size and shape of traditional cigarettes, which may increase their appeal to minors. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officials have confirmed that calls to poison centers involving e-cigarettes have surged in recent years. In 2014, the CDC reported a dramatic increase in the number of high school students who indicated they had tried e-cigarettes, including many who previously had never previously smoked.

“Touted as harmless by enthusiasts, medical experts continue to warn about the unproven safety claims of these products, especially when it comes to e-cigarette aerosol which is not harmless water vapor, but may also contain nicotine and other toxins,” said Rapp. “There are also growing concerns that ‘vaping’ may lead to other dangerous experimentation. No matter how you look at this emerging problem, the time for Pennsylvania to become the next to state to ban the sale of e-cigarettes to minors is now.”

House Bill 954 now advances to the state Senate for consideration. Visit RepRapp.com or Facebook.com/RepRapp for the latest legislative updates.

Posted by on Jun 15 2015. Filed under Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

1 Comment for “House Unanimously Approves Rapp Bill to Add Pennsylvania to List of States Banning E-Cigarette Sales to Minors”

  1. charlie

    The straw dogs are howling. There is no such thing as “harmless” anything in the known universe. Ecigs are never the less way way WAY less harmful than cigarettes. That’s been a true blessing for smokers like me who’ve switched to them. Too bad ecigs weren’t around when I was a kid.

    The common law is that nobody gives anything to any child their parents may not approve. However parents should decide if their children may posess ecigs off school property. If the kids don’t smoke, it’s over.

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