U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer encouraged the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to regulate e-cigarettes immediately. He is concerned about the potential harmful effect of such products, which are becoming popular among high school students.
In a statement, Sen. Schumer noted a study indicating that 20% of New York kids are using e-cigarettes. More than one in five high school students in the state used e-cigarettes last year. That rate is higher than the national average.
In 2016, 11.3% of high school students used e-cigarettes, according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Data from the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene showed that Staten Island public school had the highest rate of e-cigarette use among public high schools in 2015.
Over the past 30 days, 19% of youth in Staten Island, 13.7% in Bronx, 15% in Queens, 16.2% in Brooklyn, and 17.4% in Manhattan used e-cigarettes. In New York City, 15.9% of youth used e-cigarettes.
Sen. Schumer says e-cigarettes are “concerning and could be dangerous”
Additionally, Sen. Schumer observed that a new e-cigarette called “Juul” is popular among kids. The product reportedly contains “mystery chemicals.”
The senator is concerned about the impact of e-cigarettes to the health and well-being of young people. Therefore, he requested the FDA to reconsider its decision of delaying a critical regulatory compliance deadlines for tobacco and e-cigarettes.
According to him, “To know that New York kids, like those on Staten Island, are much more likely to be using these newly-crafted e-cig devices, like Juul, is not only concerning, but it could be dangerous.”
Sen. Schumer demanded FDA to “smoke out dangerous e-cigs and their mystery chemicals before more Staten Island kids get hooked.”
FDA decision to delay regulation on e-cigarettes is devastating
In his letter to the FDA, Sen. Schumer expressed “grave concern about the exposure of the nation’s youth to harmful tobacco and e-cigarette products.”
According to him, the FDA “must take immediate action to prevent the spread of chronic disease.” He emphasized that it is “the entity responsible for ensuring the health and safety of American citizens with regard to inhalable product.”
Additionally, Sen. Schumer said the FDA should reconsider its decision of delaying the regulatory compliance deadlines for tobacco and e-cigarettes. He pointed out that the regulations are critical to protect children from harmful product that appeal to their demographic.
Furthermore, the senator said delaying the rules is “devastating to the public health of our national community.”