The Canadian Vaping Association (CVA) and its members are committed to ensuring that youth do not have access to electronic cigarettes and related products. They are doing this by conforming to national standards that the CVA is working with Health Canada to establish. More importantly, they realize that e-cigarette retailers have to be vigilant. Thus, the CVA took action to prevent minors from accessing vapour products well before the federal government passed the Tobacco and Vaping Products Act (TVPA), by establishing protocols that prohibit minors from purchasing them. These measures include ensuring that our members ask for photo ID from anyone who looks like they may be below the age of majority and making sure that online retailers require age verification on all shipments.
That noted, according to the Royal College of Physicians in U.K. — a globally recognized clinical body — vaping is a 95% less harmful alternative for adult smokers than tobacco products. Thus, the CVA has been working closely with regulators at Health Canada and in provinces across the country to further our shared goal of ensuring that adult smokers have easy access to vapour products, while preventing youth from accessing them. We believe that vape product shops, which in many provinces are required to have clouded windows and only allow customers who are above the age of majority to enter, is the best way of furthering this objective.
The CVA will continue to work closely with Health Canada to ensure youth are educated about the harms of nicotine addiction. According to statements released by Health Canada, we would like to inform adult smokers that, “If you are a smoker, switching completely to vaping is a much less harmful option,” and that by “switching completely to vaping products, smokers are exposed to a small fraction of the 7,000 chemicals found in tobacco smoke.”