LANSING, MI (MPRN)-- Soon minors in Michigan will no longer be able to use e-cigarettes. Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed bills Tuesday that effectively ban vaping for minors.
In a statement, Whitmer said she signed the bills with “significant reservations.”
That’s because the new laws would not put e-cigarettes under the umbrella of Michigan’s tobacco control laws. Instead the laws create new categories for e-cigarettes and products.
“This is an important step in protecting public health and keeping tobacco products out of the hands of our kids, but we have to keep working to ensure that minors don’t have access to any tobacco products, including harmful e-cigarettes,” Whitmer said in a statement. “That includes raising the legal age for purchasing these products to 21, curtailing internet sales of e-cigarettes, and banning the marketing of all tobacco products to children. I’m ready to keep working with the legislature to make sure we’re doing everything we can to protect our kids and our public health.”
Schools across the state have called minors vaping and “epidemic.” And they’re hopeful that any new regulations will give their school regulations more teeth.
DJ Hilson is president of the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan. He said schools will have additional support through law enforcement for school policies aimed at preventing vaping.
“They really had their hands tied,” Hilson said. “They didn’t know how to quite handle it or what to do, so schools win and that’s a great thing for the state of Michigan.”
The state Department of Health and Human Services opposed the bills. Whitmer also announced that she wants the department to do a study and make recommendations on how Michigan should regulate e-cigarettes and similar products in the future.