CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – The American Lung Association launched a new End Youth Vaping Campaign in hopes of encouraging teens to kick the habit of vaping. The campaign targets West Virginia students, parents, and schools.
According to a 2019 CDC survey, nearly 36% of high school students in the state have used e-cigarettes. That’s about one in four high school students vaping.
Researchers say that exposes them to harmful chemicals and puts them at an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
“Whether a school is remote, whether it’s not remote right now, young people like to socialize and whether it’s with one friend, whether it’s with several friends, you know, the opportunity is still there for them to use these products.” Deb Brown, Chief Mission Officer of the American Lung Association said.
In 2019, a West Virginia attorney filed a class-action lawsuit against Juul Labs, Inc., Altria Group, Inc., and Philip Morris USA, Inc. for targeting teenagers and pre-teens with nicotine-containing products.
While that works on the manufacturers, the lung association is going after the users. It’s starting with this Get Your Head Out of the Cloud public awareness ad.
The second is the vape free school’s initiative.
“This is to help school administrators and educators talk and work with the young people who are using these vaping products in their schools,” Brown said.
The third is an advocacy plan to advance e-cigarette policies and increasing funding for tobacco prevention and the last is investing.
“We are investing $2,000,000 into research to understand the effects of e-cigarettes on developing lungs,” Brown said.
The campaign started Wednesday September 2, 2020.