New York City Eyeing Ban on Electronic Cigarettes
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, already concerned with public health, is looking to put a ban on electronic cigarettes, though many believe it’s safer than smoking traditional cigarettes.
This summer, the city’s Health Committee is considering several proposals related to cigarettes, including those that classify as e-cigarettes. According to the Consumer Advocates for Smoke-Free Alternatives Association, the proposals would redefine tobacco products under New York City law to include e-cigarettes and related accessories, components and parts.
In addition, it would ban the display of e-cigarettes and smokeless tobacco in retail stores, and ban the sale of e-liquid flavors other than tobacco, mint, menthol and wintergreen in areas other than an age-restricted “tobacco bar”, among other restrictions.
Dr. Michael Siegel, a professor at the Boston University School of Public Health, is not in favor of this ban. “This is a de facto ban on electronic cigarettes. You’re basically telling a bunch of ex-smokers to go back to cigarettes,” he said, about the ban of e-liquid flavor cartridges.
In 2009, the FDA issued a warning about e-cigarette products, saying some samples included ingredients found in anti-freeze, but a Drexel University study released last month concluded that the supplementary chemicals in e-cigarettes were not harmful to users or bystanders.
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