PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia is the latest big city to wage a fight against vaping. On Thursday, City Council began considering new legislation to keep children safe.
Philadelphia City Councilmember William Greenlee, with the support of Mayor Jim Kenney and other councilmembers, introduced legislation that would crack down on the sale of e-cigarettes to minors.
“There’s a problem out there, there’s a health problem. It’s heavily affecting young people. I think when there’s a problem, the government has a responsibility to step in,” Greenlee said.
The administration would specifically be targeting the sale of flavored e-cigarettes, which smell and taste like candy or desserts. The bill would also limit e-cigarette nicotine levels and flavorings.
“We’re basically saying you can’t sell those products except in adult-only facilities where children can’t come in at all under 18,” Greenlee said.
“I think it’s a good idea,” Kamaura Brooks said.
Brook sees the need for new legislation, saying vaping products are so readily available to young people.
“It’s readily accessible to go to a gas station where you’re not gonna be carded or IDed or even a mom and pop store,” she said.
Some are applauding vaping stores that they say sell products responsibly to adults only.
Christine Hughes used e-cigarettes to quit smoking a few years ago. She says the need is there to help kids stop before they ever get started.
“They shouldn’t even be doing that, being under 18. It’s not good for them, it’s not good for their lungs, they’re still young, they wanna stay healthy. They should just stay away,” Hughes said.
The bill is being expedited through the council and could become law by the end of December if passed.
Enforcement would take place through existing environmental health ticketing processes, and violations would carry a $250 fine.