Neenah’s Common Council approved a new law, banning minors from vaping in the city.
Health and city officials say the issue of minors using vaping products has significantly increased and is a big problem.
This ordinance makes it so that anyone younger than 18 will no longer be allowed to use tobacco or vaping products in the city of Neenah.
According to Neenah’s assistant attorney, who wrote the ordinance, a survey given to Neenah High School students shows vaping has increased drastically.
“This issue is not an issue that’s just affecting Neenah, its’s not just affecting Wisconsin, it’s affecting the whole country,” assistant city attorney Adam VandenHeuvel said.
While the majority of the council was on board with the ordinance, one alderman felt this was more of a school and parenting issue, and that banning vaping could potentially lead to even bigger problems.
“If this is something that they don’t do, then so, o.k. they’re not vaping, but now what are they doing?” alderman Kathie Boyette said. “Now they’re smoking cigarettes, and we know the habit of smoking cigarettes can be contributed to the same as a heroin addict.”
A tobacco prevention specialist from the Winnebago County Health Department says the vaping ban is just a small step toward preventing a huge issue.
“We found that 30 percent of Winnebago County High School students reported using electronic vapor products in the last 30 days.” Lynnsey Erickson said. “That’s about twice the rate of state and national average, so it’s pretty concerning.”
The fear is that not knowing what’s in a child’s e-cigarette could increase health issues, as well.