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Disposable vapes to be banned to save children’s health

Although plans to ban vapes appear likely to pass into law, a handful of Conservative MPs have objected the proposal claiming our country could turn into a ‘nanny state’.

Yesterday morning, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak took to the stands and announced plans to ban the sale of disposable vapes and gradually phase out the sale of tobacco in a bid to tackle the rising number of young people who have adopted the habit.

woman in blue denim jacket smoking

In the UK is it already illegal to sell any vape to anyone under the age of 18, however disposable vapes, which are often sold in smaller and more colourful packaging, have come under fire as the government believes they are a ‘key driver behind the alarming rise in youth vaping.’

Against this backdrop, new figures from the Action on Smoking and Health (ash) charity display 7.6% of 11 to 17-year-olds now vape regularly or occasionally, an increase of 4.1% in 2020.

Commenting on the announcement, Rishi Sunak said: ‘Children shouldn’t be vaping, we don’t want them to get addicted, we still don’t understand the full long-term health impacts.’

However, former Prime Minister Liz Truss has publicly denounced the plans by calling them ‘profoundly unconservative’ and an extension of the ‘nanny state’ – a government that tries to give too much advice or make too many laws about how people should live their lives, especially about eating, smoking, or drinking alcohol.

In response, Sunak said: ‘I don’t think there’s anything unconservative about caring about our children’s health.

‘I respect that some people will disagree with me on this but I think this is the right long-term thing for our country. Smoking causes one in four cancer deaths. It’s responsible for a hospital admission every minute.’

Should the ban on disposable vapes be passed into law, along with action to combat the sale of some child-friendly fruit-flavoured varieties and restrictions on packaging and in-shop displays, it would come into force late this year or in early 2025 via a mixture of secondary legislation and a bill.

In addition, the already announced ban on selling tobacco products to anyone born on or after 1st January 2009 will also be introduced as a law, potentially in the same bill that is connected to vaping.

Image: Dushane white

More on this topic:

Smokers urged to ditch cigarettes for vapes in new world-first scheme

Vape ban bill proposed to protect children’s health

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