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Bloomberg Philanthropies invests $160 million to address youth e-cigarette use

Campaign will target flavored e-cigarettes and the marketing of products to children  

Today, Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the creation of a new $160 million initiative to address the youth e-cigarette epidemic. The new initiative launches on the heels of 33 states investigating more than 450 cases of lung illnesses associated with vaping, many of which involve teens and young adults.

"The American Cancer Society and American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network are proud to join Bloomberg Philanthropies and our public health partners in this new campaign to work to reverse the youth e-cigarette epidemic across the country by prohibiting flavored tobacco products including e-cigarettes and compelling the FDA to swiftly exercise its authority granted by Congress to aggressively regulate all tobacco products," said Gary Reedy, CEO of the American Cancer Society and the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN).

An excerpt of the press release is below. You can access the full press release on fightcancer.org and the ACS policy position statement on e-cigarettes on cancer.org.

If you receive media requests, please coordinate with your ACS CAN media advocacy colleagues.

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Bloomberg Philanthropies Launches New $160 Million Program to End the Youth E-Cigarette Epidemic

MORE THAN 3.6 MILLION U.S. KIDS USE E-CIGARETTES, INCLUDING 1 IN 5 HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS; 97 PERCENT OF KIDS WHO USE E-CIGARETTES USE FLAVORED VARIETIES

New initiative launches on heels of 33 states investigating more than 450 cases of lung illnesses associated with vaping, many of which involve teens and young adults

New York (September 10, 2019)—In response to alarming levels of e-cigarette use among youth in the United States—including a 78 percent increase among high school students in just one year—Bloomberg Philanthropies today announced the creation of a new $160 million initiative to end the youth e-cigarette epidemic.

Goals of the initiative, "Protect Kids: Fight Flavored E-Cigarettes," include banning all flavored e-cigarettes—and stopping Juul and other e-cigarette companies from marketing their products to children. The three-year program will be led by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, which will partner with other leading organizations including parent and community groups concerned about the nation's kids and health.

More than 3.6 million middle and high school students in the United States use e-cigarettes, accounting for about one-third of all U.S. e-cigarette users. E-cigarettes with kid-friendly flavors such as mint, mango, gummy bear and cotton candy are fueling this epidemic; 97 percent of kids who use e-cigarettes use the flavored varieties, and 70 percent report the flavors as the reason they use e-cigarettes. Teen smoking rates in the United States declined by more than 70 percent between 2000 and 2018, but the spike in e-cigarette use among youth threatens to undo a generation's worth of progress.

The creation of the initiative comes as health authorities in 33 states are investigating more than 450 cases of severe respiratory illnesses associated with vaping, with many cases involving teens and young adults. A CDC health advisory released in response to these alarming incidents encourages e-cigarette users to stop using these products while investigations into the cause of these illnesses are ongoing.

 

 


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