Ontario Banning Flavoured Tobacco, Restricting E-Cigarettes
Tougher regulations in Ontario are coming for e-cigarettes.
The province is banning the sale of e-cigarettes to minors and outlawing use of them by adults in public wherever smoking is prohibited.
The Liberal government wants to treat e-cigarettes just like regular smokes, which means anyone under the age of 19 would not be allowed to purchase them.
If passed, the legislation would also:
- Ban the sale of e-cigarettes in certain places where the sale of tobacco is prohibited.
- Prohibit the display and promotion of e-cigarettes in places where e-cigarettes or tobacco products are sold, or offered for sale.
- Ban the sale of flavoured tobacco products, with a delayed implementation date for menthol-flavoured tobacco products.
- Increase maximum fines for those who sell tobacco to youth, making Ontario’s maximum fines the highest in Canada.
- Strengthen enforcement to allow for testing of substances used in waterpipes (e.g. hookahs, shisha) in indoor public places.
The legislation also means so-called vape or vapour lounges would be outlawed.
The province is also putting an end to the sale of all flavoured tobacco products, and will expand the prohibition to include menthol cigarettes.
The industry will have up to two years to phase out the menthol smokes.
“Flavoured tobacco has been the latest marketing tool for tobacco companies to appeal to youth to create that next generation of smokers.” said Associate Health Minister Dipika Damerla.
“We’re not banning it… All we’re saying is we want to regulate it and there’s absolutely nothing in this legislation that would stop an adult from using it,” she continued.
An age restriction on e-cigarette sales would begin on January 1st, 2016, followed a year later by the ban on vaping in public.
The ban on flavoured tobacco (Menthol) won’t go into effect for two years.
Another bill is being reintroduced by the Liberals that would require restaurants and grocery stores to list calorie counts on their menu and menu boards. The grocery stores would have to have more than 20 outlets.
Just a week ago, Ontario’s Finance Minister Charles Sousa released the province’s fall economic statement today, which is all about clamping down on tax cheats; targeting those who buy contraband tobacco.
Roughly 40% of cigarettes smoked in the province are un-taxed, because they’re manufactured on First Nations Reserves, then illegally distributed throughout the province.
And just prior to that announcement, the Ontario government had told the public come January 1st 2015, smoking will become prohibited on all restaurant and bar patios, children’s playgrounds and publicly owned sports fields or be faced with a fine of $250.
The sale of tobacco on college and university campuses will then become illegal as well.
Do you agree with the new smoking laws and restrictions? Do you use an E-cigarette? Do you think banning menthol cigarettes is really necessary?