New York State may soon ban all flavors of e-cigarettes except for tobacco and menthol under a declaration of a public-health crisis, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Sunday.
The proposed ban, which would take effect as early as Oct. 4, comes amid both a spate of vaping-related illnesses and deaths, and a nationwide push to ban flavored e-cigarettes that can appeal to kids.
“This is a burgeoning health crisis,” said Cuomo in announcing the move at his Midtown office.
President Trump moved last week to temporarily yank flavored e-cigarettes from the market until manufacturers can have them evaluated and regulated by federal health watchdogs, but Cuomo argued that measure doesn’t go far enough.
“I’m not relying or waiting on the federal government,” said Cuomo. “I don’t expect them to do anything responsibly because I’ve never seen them act responsibly.
“Our destiny is in our own hands and we are taking action.”
Health Department Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker will formally recommend the ban to the Public Health and Health Planning Council this week, at which point state retailers would have a two-week grace period before the crackdown begins.
New York would join Michigan, which earlier this month became the first state to ban flavored e-cigarettes.
Juul, the nation’s largest e-cigarette company, said it welcomes steps to keep kids from using its products.
“We will review today’s announcement as we strongly agree with the need for aggressive category-wide action on flavored products,” said spokesman Austin Finan. “That is why we already stopped selling our non-tobacco/non-menthol based JUULpods to traditional retail stores, are fighting against counterfeit and compatible products made with unknown ingredients under unknown manufacturing standards, and will fully comply with local laws and the final FDA policy when effective.”
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