Local Leaders Discuss How to Tackle the Vaping Crisis at Cheshire Forum

With more and more people becoming sick from vaping, some believe it might be time for tougher rules for those products.

The issue could soon come up during the next legislative session.

“We’re getting reports of kids in elementary school using vaping products. So this is really a problem we have to address,” said State Senator Mary Abrams, D- Cheshire.

The issue of kids and vaping was the hot topic at a forum in Cheshire on Thursday.

It comes as nearlu 1,300 people in the country have developed lung injuries became of vaping.

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is still trying to find the cause of the epidemic, it appears young men who vape products with THC are at particular risk.

In Connecticut, 31 people have fallen ill, according to Public Health Commissioner Renee Coleman-Mitchell.

“This is a very serious public health concern. We have had one death to date,” said Coleman-Mitchell.

Efforts are building to teach kids and parents about the potential dangers of vaping.

But Abrams thinks lawmakers can do more.

“We want to look at where vaping products are being sold. They seem to be readily available and we have to look at that issue. They’re even online and how to keep them out of the hands of kids,” said Abrams.

The senator also wants to look into whether the state should ban flavors.

Over at the Whiff ‘n Puff in New Britain, owner Dave Dooling is all in favor of trying to stop kids from vaping.

At the shop, customers have to show ID and there are lots of signs making it clear you have to be 21 or over to purchase things.

“My dad died of smoking related heart disease. That was key to me, getting people a healthier alternative,” said Dooling.

He believes flavored products can help adults quit smoking.

“That’s the key thing is trying to get away from that tobacco taste and away from that tobacco flavor because you’re trying to get away from tobacco,” said Dooling.

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