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Friday, January 31, 2014

E-Cig Education

Posted on Fri, Jan 31, 2014 at 3:00 PM

Nicotine patches and gums are medicines. These pharmaceutical nicotine products do make medicinal claims — hence they are "drugs" (medicines) under Canadian law, regardless of their content. E-cigarettes are not medicines. They do not make medicinal claims, and do not function as medicines either. Hence e-cigarettes are not "drugs" (medicines) under Canadian law, regardless of nicotine content.

Health Canada cannot lawfully "authorize" or approve non-medicines as medicines. Doctors know this, as does Health Canada. Insisting that e-cigarettes are required to seek approval as something that they aren't (knowing full well that any such approval is impossible for Health Canada to ever grant) is ridiculous, unlawful, and puts Canadians at greater risk. The deception works to deter smokers from switching to vaping, and works to delay the e-cig industry from understanding and following applicable laws and regulations.

E-cigarettes are not tobacco products. E-cigarettes (with or without nicotine) contain no tobacco and produce no smoke. They are not tobacco products, and cannot be regulated as tobacco in Canada. The federal Tobacco Act exempts e-cigarette products with nicotine from being classed as tobacco. Canadian law already regulates e-cigarettes. Popular myth says that e-cigarettes with nicotine are "illegal" or "banned" in Canada, and remain unregulated. Yet according to Canadian law, these products are legal and regulated. Canadian law says that e-cig hardware items are regulated as consumer products, and that e-liquid with nicotine (the liquid vaporized by an e-cigarette) is regulated as a consumer chemical product under the Consumer Chemicals and Containers Regulations, 2001. The government is simply not admitting this fact or enforcing these regulations.

Smoking kills. E-cigarettes do not. E-cigarettes with nicotine have not been scientifically demonstrated to be any more harmful than typical caffeine consumption.

Globally, smoking kills approximately six million people every year. E-cigarette use has never demonstrably killed anyone. To date there is no credible scientific evidence to suggest (let alone demonstrate) that e-cigarettes will ever kill anyone when used as intended.

Health Canada is lying about which laws apply. For years, Health Canada has provably misled Canadians about the regulatory requirements for e-cigarettes — and with reason. Billions of dollars are collected each year in tobacco-tax revenue alone. E-cigarettes present the gravest commercial threat to smoking the world has ever seen. The government is not eager to see the status quo change — even if it saves the lives of millions who would otherwise die from smoking. Anti-smoking groups (like Smoke Free Nova Scotia – funded by Health care dollars from the government and health authorities, Cancer Care Nova Scotia, Capital Health themselves, the Lung Association of Nova Scotia) want smokers to keep on smoking. Tobacco control has become a very lucrative gravy train for them, well-funded by big pharmaceutical companies and government. If vast numbers of Canadian smokers switch to e-cigarettes and no longer smoke, anti-smoking groups will soon have no further reason to exist. They are no more eager than Health Canada is to see smokers voluntarily switch in droves to an attractive, non-lethal consumer alternative to smoking.

Flavors in e-cigarettes are a deterrent to smoking, not a gateway to it. Smokers who switch to electronic cigarettes quickly realize that, comparatively, cigarette smoke tastes disgusting. The wide variety of flavors available in e-cigarettes discourage a relapse to smoking. Why would anyone using an affordable, pleasantly flavored e-cigarette that is not killing them decide to switch to expensive, filthy-tasting real cigarettes which will kill them? "Gateway" fears are simply unfounded. —a vaper, no longer a smoker

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