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Researcher Drops Vaping Truth Bombs and More! Tobacco Harm Reduction News

Researcher drops major truth bombs on vaping misinformation. Juul gets a second chance. New York Post tries to rewrite history. Mayo Clinic lies about tobacco continuum of risk. WHO makes a questionable claim about Sweden. Calls to Action and more!

Scroll to the bottom of this post for a link to the audio/video versions of this post!


CALLS TO ACTION

RHODE ISLAND

⚠️URGENT⚠️

H 7225, a must pass budget bill, is reaching a final vote! The House is finalizing language that enacts a 10% wholesale tax and codifies the health department’s flavor ban. But there is one more hurdle before passage and we have an opportunity to make this bill less bad. State reps are expected to vote on the final bill by Saturday, June 8!

TAKE ACTION: Rhode Island: Stop a Vape Tax!

READING, MASSACHUSETTS

The Town of Reading Board of Health is expected to meet on June 10, 2024 to consider an ordinance that would progressively raise the minimum legal sales age for tobacco and nicotine products. If adopted, the so-called “Nicotine Free Generation” (NFG) law would ban sales to adults who haven’t reached the age of 21 by January 1, 2025.

TAKE ACTION: https://casaa.orReading, MA: Stop Creeping Prohibition!

LOUISIANA

HB 621, known to advocates as “PMTA Registry” legislation, has passed the legislature and is heading to the governor’s desk for signing.

Please take a moment to contact Governor Landry and urge a VETO on HB 621!

If enacted, this law would change Louisiana’s existing VAPE Directory law by further restricting where retailers can purchase the products they sell. Currently, vape shops can buy directly from manufacturers, but if HB 621 is enacted shops will only be allowed to purchase from licensed wholesalers who make their own decisions about which products to keep in stock.

TAKE ACTION: Louisiana: Stop a Big Tobacco Protection Act!

 

MORE CALLS TO ACTION:  GET INVOLVED: Calls to Action By State


TOBACCO HARM REDUCTION

Researcher Drops Major Truth Bombs on Vaping Misinformation

This WUSF NPR podcast about vaping is actually pretty well balanced!

While Prof. Yiota Kitsantis absurdly insinuated that e-cigarettes are not safer alternatives to smoking because…they contain nicotine (?) and fell back on the old “harms adolescent brains” claim that’s actually based on rat studies, Dr. Vani Simmons dropped major truth bombs on several myths and misconceptions!

Here are just a few:

“If it was true that vaping would lead to more cigarette smoking, you would have seen an increase in cigarette smoking over time. But instead, we see an inverse relationship, where vaping rates have increased, and cigarette smoking rates have declined at an unprecedented speed.”

“It does not mean that vaping is safe, but it does mean, in terms of the relative risks to combustible cigarettes, it is much safer and therefore represents a harm reduction product.”

“We’re not looking at the fact that among high school students, cigarette smoking almost doesn’t exist. And that is a public health victory that nobody is really talking about. So yes, we don’t want you vaping. But let’s also applaud the fact that you don’t see high school students smoking cigarettes anymore.”

Thank you, Dr. Simmons!

READ MORE: Two Florida researchers discuss the health impact of vaping

 

CASAA IN ACTION

CASAA Gets a Quote

CASAA CEO Alex Clark provided a consumer advocate perspective and was quoted several times in this C-Store Decisions article about smoke-free tobacco and nicotine products.

“Similar to what we saw in vaping, consumers are looking for a variety of flavors other than tobacco, a range of nicotine strengths and affordability,” said Clark.

Alex actually switched from vaping to smoke-free pouches a couple of years ago, making his observations an expertise grounded in personal experience.

READ MORE: Smokeless Continues to Succeed

CASAA Needs Your Help!

We invite you to join us on Saturday, June 15, for a special marathon edition of CASAA Live. Starting at 9:00 AM (EDT) and continuing until 9:00 PM (EDT), we will be hosting an all-day event with special guests and friends. While this content is free, it is also a crucial fundraising event for CASAA.

CASAA is currently facing significant funding challenges that may force us to cut back to only the most essential activities. Without enough monthly commitments from our members, CASAA’s ability to effectively represent and connect consumers with lawmakers will be severely impacted. This fundraiser is vital to maintaining our operations and keeping your voices heard by officials.

We are excited to bring you a full day of engaging conversations with notable guests, including Clive Bates, Annie Kleykamp, Colin Mendelsohn, Greg Conley, Matt Culley, Allison Boughner, Lindsey Stroud, Charles Gardner, Skip Murray, and Joe Gitchell.

CASAA has been fighting for nicotine consumers since 2009 and these are just a handful of the amazing friends we’ve made over the years. It’s a privilege to have them with us and we’d be honored if you’d join us too.

Tune in on June 15th starting at 9:00 AM via YouTube, X (formerly Twitter) and Facebook.

Even if you can’t join us on June 15th you can still help right now. Your monthly support is vital to keeping our work going, so make a donation today! If only 4% of our members give $2 per month, CASAA will be funded without the need to ask for support from industry. As much as this is a desperate time for CASAA, it’s an opportunity to solidify our independence and avoid future funding conflicts with big business agendas.

DONATE: Click to Support CASAA Today!

 

TOBACCO CONTROL

Mayo Clinic Lies About Tobacco Continuum of Risk

In this Mayo Clinic Minute, Dr. Jon Ebbert, medical director of the Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center, falsely claims that “there is no ‘lesser evil’ when it comes to tobacco use” and “there’s no safe, or safer, way to consume tobacco.”

According to the FDA:

“No tobacco product is safe. However, the health risks for different tobacco products exist on a spectrum, which is sometimes referred to as a “continuum of risk.” Combusted, or smoked, tobacco products – such as cigarettes – are the most harmful type of tobacco product. Non-combusted products – such as e-cigarettes and other smokeless tobacco products – generally have lower health risks than cigarettes and other combustible tobacco products.”

What does Dr. Ebbert think “continuum of risk” and “lower health risks” mean if not that some products are “safer” and a “lesser evil?”

READ MORE: Mayo Clinic Minute: No ‘lesser evil’ when it comes to tobacco use

Clive Bates Explains Tobacco Control Idealists

“The idealists in tobacco control would like to rid us of this relatively benign recreational drug. Sorry, but that will not happen, and there is no reason why it should. People use nicotine because it makes them feel better, for its pleasurable, functional and therapeutic attributes.

 

However, demonizing nicotine and treating all nicotine products as if they are equally harmful will obstruct the realists’ efforts to address the significant harm caused by smoking. The idealists take each ban and blockage of any nicotine product as progress to their larger goal.”

~ Clive Bates

READ MORE: Clive Bates: Realists and Idealists

WHO Makes Questionable Claim About Sweden

Peter Allebeck, professor of social medicine at Stockholm’s Karolinska Institutet, claims that it’s not true that Sweden has the lowest level of tobacco-related mortality in the EU.

“If you look at the most recent studies available, Sweden does rank low but certainly not among the lowest,” he tells Swedish Radio News. However, he doesn’t say what studies were used nor what metric those studies used to determine Sweden’s ranking.

He says that at least 14 other European countries included in the WHO’s European statistics are lower when it comes to tobacco-related mortality. A recent search of the WHO website found statistics related to smoking, e-cigarette use and preventable diseases such as heart disease, stroke and lung diseases (without data specific to tobacco use,) but nothing ranking countries on tobacco-related mortality was available to the public. So, how did they determine which deaths were “tobacco-related?”

We do know that “tobacco-related” deaths are overwhelmingly the result of smoking (as much as anti-nicotine organizations would like us to believe otherwise.) Even the WHOs latest European Health Report (2021) only had data on current and daily smoking (2018,) not “tobacco use.” According to a recent Eurostat report, Sweden had the lowest smoking rates in the EU.

Without providing any actual evidence to back up his claim, we find it difficult to give Mr. Allebeck the benefit of the doubt. Especially since it wouldn’t be the first time the WHO just “made things up” to support its narrative.

Read More: WHO: Sweden does not have the lowest tobacco mortality rate in Europe – despite Swedish parties’ claims

 

MEDIA MISINFORMATION

New York Post Rewrites History

In a curious rewriting of history, this article about disposable vapes says NYC is “being flooded with illegal flavored e-vapes made in China after banning the smokes’ sale in 2020.”

In fact, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed a bill prohibiting the sale of all flavored vaping products, not just imported disposables.

Supporters of the ban were warned that prohibition doesn’t work. It was widely predicted that banning all flavored products — which resulted in the closure of hundreds of reputable vape shops selling bottled e-liquids for the refillable devices used mainly by adults — would simply create a thriving illicit market and/or push consumers to buy in nearby states without a ban.

And here we are.

READ MORE: NYC flooded with illegal flavored vapes from China despite ban to protect kids: study

 

FDA

Juul Gets Another Chance

The US Food and Drug Administration announced it had rescinded marketing denial orders for vaping products from Juul Labs Inc., although it has not yet decided whether the products will ultimately stay on the market.

Juul said its products will remain on the market during scientific review.

READ MORE: FDA rescinds marketing ban on Juul vaping products


CASAA IN ACTION // CASAA Live

May 30th was World Vape Day! Join Alex, Logan and Kristin as we take a look at examples of weaponized misinformation: the tactic of arming well-meaning people to fuel moral panics based on ignorance and fear.

Join us on Saturday, June 15, for a special marathon edition of CASAA Live. Starting at 9:00 AM (EDT) and continuing until 9:00 PM (EDT), we will be hosting an all-day event with special guests and friends. While this content is free, it is also a crucial fundraising event for CASAA.

We are excited to bring you a full day of engaging conversations with notable guests, including Clive Bates, Annie Kleykamp, Colin Mendelsohn, Greg Conley, Matt Culley, Allison Boughner, Lindsey Stroud, Charles Gardner, Skip Murray, and Joe Gitchell.

TAKE ACTION // CASAA State Facebook Groups

Have you joined your CASAA State Facebook group yet? Check it out now! Click the link below, click on your state on the map, then click the “Join Now” button to go to your state’s group page. It’s as easy as that to stay updated on local happenings, meet local advocates and never miss a Call to Action in your state!

Don’t forget to also follow our official Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/CASAAmedia

FIND YOUR GROUP: CASAA State Locator

CASAA STORE // Apparel and More

Show your support by shopping our store! Our president (and brilliant website/swag designer) Danielle has added some awesome new designs to CASAA’s apparel shop!

VISIT: CASAA Apparel and Swag Store


CASAA MEDIA // Spotify

CASAA’s podcast is on Spotify! Please give us a follow here:

CASAA MEDIA // Podcast

Catch up on past tobacco harm reduction news with Alex and Logan on the CASAA podcasts on SoundCloud every Monday and now live on YouTube and Facebook every Saturday at 3:30 PM.

SoundCloud: