SHASTA COUNTY, Calif.- "Well, so, if this ordinance passes, we'll be forced to close our doors because over 90% of what we sell is flavored vapor products and so we have thousands of customers that rely on flavored vapor products so that they don't smoke," Kari Hess, co-owner of Nor Cal Vape in Redding, says.
On Monday, Shasta County health officials presented their proposition to the Shasta County Board of Supervisors putting forth the idea of banning the sale of all flavored tobacco products within the county.
Citing that tobacco products are simply not good for health reasons, Interim Public Health Director, Brandy Isola says this is a necessary step to protect kids in our community.
"There are strong addiction issues associated with nicotine and the young person's brain is still developing up until the age of 25," Isola says." So vaping, nicotine, or substances for that matter,before that age, can impact brain development."
While some may agree that the banning of these products is a step in the right direction, Action News Now went to a local vape shop to find out what their opinion is on the possibility of a ban.
Even though recent public concerns have pointed to vaping being very dangerous, Hess believes otherwise.
"Every single scientific body in the world agrees that vapor products are less harmful than cigarettes," Hess says. " Even the FDA and the American Cancer Society have come out and said that it's a harm reduction tool and less harmful than smoking cigarettes. If really people are concerned about public health, they'd be embracing vapor products."
Whatever the decision may be moving forward, one thing is clear...this debate won't be finished anytime soon.
"Our primary concern is to help parents and schools combat this vaping epidemic among youth because the vaping industry has become very crafty at marketing to and providing devices to teens and young adults where they can hide the products very easily," Isola says.
"What'd I'd like to do is have the opportunity to work with the county to draft a sensible regulation that would work towards limiting youth access, but still preserving access to adults," Hess says.
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