For Immediate Release
September 4, 2019
LANSING—The Michigan League for Public Policy joins health groups and children’s advocates from across the state and around the country today in applauding Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s efforts to end dangerous vaping and e-cigarette use amongst young Michiganders. By declaring these products as the public health emergency that they are and banning the sale of flavored vaping products, Whitmer’s actions are the strongest state anti-vaping policy in the nation and a swift response to the growing research of the threats these products pose. The League issued the following statement on Gov. Whitmer’s declaration today. It can be attributed to Michigan League for Public Policy Chief Operating Officer Karen Holcomb-Merrill.
“With sweet and enticing flavors, questionable health claims and intentional marketing and advertisements targeting our kids, vaping is picking up right where traditional tobacco products left off and elected officials, public health advisors and child advocates are having to fight the same battles all over again. And what’s at stake—kids’ lives and healthy futures—is still the same, too. As the Michigan Kids Count organization, the League fights for positive policy changes to help Michigan’s youth, but we also stand up against nefarious and exploitative policies—and in this case, industries—that are intentionally going after our kids.
“Within the last 60 days, Michigan has had six apparent cases of vaping-associated respiratory illnesses. Considering these cases and the first confirmed vaping-related death in the nation, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has rightfully recognized the public health emergency e-cigarettes and vaping tools pose to Michigan residents, especially our kids, and has taken decisive and sweeping action against them. We applaud Gov. Whitmer for refusing to wait any longer to address the danger of these products and their negative impact on the health of Michiganders, or to curtail the practices the producers and vendors are using to get them in the hands of underage kids.
“Gov. Whitmer doesn’t take this issue lightly, and neither do we. Whether it’s through our Kids Count work, our public health policy efforts, or our emphasis on making the most of state dollars and investing in preemptive and preventive care wherever possible, we see the array of threats these products pose. We’re proud to stand behind Gov. Whitmer as she takes the most aggressive stance against vaping in the nation, making our state a leader in putting our kids first. Today’s action is a great start, but regulating the vaping industry continues to pose a significant challenge and the onus remains on the Michigan Legislature to craft a comprehensive policy proposal to address this issue once and for all.”
The Michigan League for Public Policy, www.mlpp.org, is a nonprofit policy institute focused on economic opportunity for all. It is the only state-level organization that addresses poverty in a comprehensive way.