VICTORIA – New Democrats introduced legislation today that would ban the sale of flavoured tobacco products.
“The current provincial legislation does not do enough to protect B.C. youth against the harmful effects of nicotine and tobacco use,” said New Democrat health critic Judy Darcy. “The B.C. Liberal government has so far refused to take action, so we are. Our bill builds upon the existing legislation and strengthens the laws around tobacco sales that specifically target young people.”
The Tobacco Control Amendment Act amends the original Tobacco Control Act to prohibit the sale of flavoured cigarillos as well as flavoured tobacco products. These products often are packaged to resemble candy and cosmetics and many produce a sweet smelling smoke rather than the traditional cigarette smoke odour.
Darcy, who was joined by students opposing flavoured tobacco products at the legislature today, noted that the Canadian Cancer Society has also been calling for a ban on flavoured tobacco products.
“Flavoured tobacco is a serious issue in British Columbia and one that especially affects teenagers and young adults who are specifically targeted with inexpensive candy-flavoured products that mask the unpleasant smell of cigarettes,” said Darcy.
“In order to protect young people from the health risks associated with smoking, we need a commitment from the provincial government. By introducing this bill, we’re giving the B.C. government the opportunity to show leadership and join other provinces like Ontario and Alberta who have similar bans on flavoured tobacco.
“For the sake of B.C.’s youth and public health in general, I hope this bill helps give the government the push it needs to take action.”