Health and Social Services Minister Pauline Frost tabled Bill No. 3, the Tobacco and Vaping Products Control and Regulation Act, in the Legislative Assembly today.
The proposed legislation would replace the Smoke-Free Places Act with a modernized act that also addresses vaping and focuses on protecting public health, especially youth. Updates include increasing the minimum legal age for access to tobacco and vapour products to 19 years old from 18 and directing how vapour products must be sold, used and promoted.
Bill No. 3 was developed following a public engagement with Yukoners about how vaping and vapour products should be regulated in the territory as well as updates to the Smoke-Free Places Act to reflect best practices and modern-day realities.
I am proud of the work our government is doing to protect the health of young Yukoners. This proposed legislation would increase the minimum age of purchase for tobacco and vapour products to 19 years old as part of our ongoing efforts to discourage the use of these addictive and harmful products.
Minister of Health and Social Services Pauline Frost
The Smoke-Free Places Act came into effect in 2008 when e-cigarettes and vaping were not yet common.
Vaping can increase exposure to harmful chemicals and can lead to nicotine addiction. Nicotine negatively impacts brain development, meaning young people are at a particularly high risk of harm. The long-term consequences of vaping are unknown.
Four hundred and seventy-seven participants completed a survey this past May on the proposed amendments to the Smoke-Free Places Act. More information can be found within the What we Heard Report on the public survey results.
The federal Tobacco and Vaping Products Act already provides many legal restrictions on the manufacture, promotion and sale of vapour products.