Letters to the Editor

Vaping 'epidemic' demands action In Iowa

Are you aware that vaping has become an epidemic among teens? While the rate of teen cigarette smoking is going down, the number of teenagers who are vaping is rising, and the truth about vaping health risks is becoming apparent. According to a 2017 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 50 percent more high schoolers and middle schoolers vape than smoke. When cigarette smoking and nicotine vaping are added together, nicotine use may actually have increased.

According to the Iowa Youth Survey in 2016, 3 percent of 8th graders used e-cigarettes. By 2018, their use went up to 8 percent. Among 11th-graders, in 2016, 9 percent were vaping. But by 2018, that number rose to 23 percent.

We urge our legislators to address young Iowans’ concerns about vaping, and hopefully pass a bill into law that will raise the age of purchasing vaping products from 18 to 21. We would like to see these products unavailable for purchase online and delivered to your home. Currently, you can just click a box claiming you are of age. Age verification upon delivery needs to become law. There also needs to be punishments for possession of such products for those under the legal age.

We feel this is a bipartisan issue and would ask that you contact your local state legislators about this important issue. We are passionate about seeing such a bill become law in the great state of Iowa.

Eighth grade class

St. Joseph Catholic School

DeWitt

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