With the death of two individuals in Oregon tied to vaping, one in July and one in September, both public opinion and government action have started to unfold.
The big news last week: Governor Kate Brown on Friday, October 4th, issued an Executive Order which will be in effect for six months and “[bans] the sale of all flavored vaping products,” as written in the Order. It also states that “as sources causing or contributing to vaping-associated lung injuries or death are identified in an evidence-based manner in the weeks and months ahead, [Oregon Health Authority] and [Oregon Liquor Control Commission] are directed to take immediate action,” with the action being the adoption of further rules to prevent the sale of these products.
“I want to be clear though: the safest option for Oregonians right now is to not use vaping products of any kind,” Brown states in tandem with her Executive Order, “Until we know more about what is causing this illness, please, do not vape. Encourage your friends and family members to stop vaping immediately. Talk to your children about the dangers of vaping. The risks are far too high.”
Corvallis High Schools Had Already Reacted
In Corvallis, Crescent Valley High School health teacher Sheila Fowler said, “at the high school level, we have seen an increase in vaping over the last few years. We teach and have class/peer discussions about the risks of vaping in all our health classes. The students are pretty open to talking about the use amongst their classmates. We are continually updating our information and statistics on this topic. It is a major emphasis in our drug and alcohol units.”
From 2017 to 2018, high school e-cigarette use rose by 78 percent, which a little more than 3 million high school students. Also, according to the FDA, middle school e-cig use increased 48 percent.
23 percent of Oregon’s 11th graders reported using an e-cigarette in 2019, according to the Oregon Health Authority, which is a 10 percent jump in two years.
By Ryan Tuthill