Monday, 3 August 2020

618 days of failure on vaping

“Labour has spent 618 days failing to pass the most basic of laws to ban kids from vaping,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“We know Labour isn’t afraid to pass a law in a matter of hours. It just passed a law under urgency to register forestry traders. But will it pass a common sense vaping law in the dying days of this Parliament?

“Associate Health Minister Jenny Salesa has been the most inept Minister in the most incompetent government in New Zealand’s history.

Back in November 2018 – 618 days ago – she told New Zealanders that she intended to regulate vaping.

“Now, it’s likely that the legislation won’t pass before the election, with the Prime Minister blaming National.

“All Labour needed to do was to ban the sale of vaping devices and nicotine e-liquids to under 18s.

“This straightforward change would have support across the Parliament and would prevent vaping products from falling into the hands of children.

“But the legislation before Parliament fails to do this. It could be achieved by requiring ID when purchasing from a New Zealand vaping website or when couriers drop off vaping products. Neither measure is in the law.

“Labour is instead proposing to ban flavours and advertising for all New Zealanders which would be the worst imaginable outcome.

“Punishing tobacco taxes haven’t brought down smoking rates, but the market has delivered a safe, innovative solution for smokers wanting to quit. Thousands of smokers are switching to vaping.

“Labour should be putting vaping and smoking on a level playing field so that 500,000 smokers have an incentive to quit. Wholesale banning of vaping flavours and advertising would mean that smokers keep smoking for longer at a massive cost to their health and the country.

“All of this is irrelevant for now because Labour can’t even get a simple amendment through Parliament banning the sale of vaping devices and nicotine e-liquids to under 18s.”