The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (CTFK) is sending out email blasts urging for a “Call to Action” to pressure U.S. President Donald Trump to label vape shops as non-essential businesses.
“In a new low, vape shops are lobbying the Trump Administration to be declared “essential businesses” so they can stay open during the COVID-19 crisis. This is ludicrous and we need your help to stop it,” the email begins. “It is the height of disgrace for the vaping industry to argue that e-cigarettes, which damage the lungs, should be considered essential during a lung disease pandemic. It has never been more urgent for us to protect our kids and their health, not vape shops.”
Some states have labeled vape shops as non-essential businesses. In states such as Ohio, vapor advocacy groups such as the Ohio Vapor Technology Association (OHVTA) have asked its members to close their doors during the pandemic. Ohio, however, allows online sales. Many US states do not.
Gas stations and convenience stores, where the majority of combustible cigarettes are purchased, are labeled essential businesses. CTFK does not make any mention of asking for businesses that sell deadly cigarettes to be closed.