Two Bills Target Secondhand Cigarette Smoke and Using E-Cigarettes in Public
Connecticut legislators have paved the way to introduce two new bills to the books. The first bill would keep adults from smoking tobacco cigarettes while young children are in the car and the second bill would implement tougher rules for e-cigarettes. Both of these potential bills have made it past the Public Health Committee.
House Bill 6285: Children and Secondhand Smoke
HB 6285 was introduced in an effort to keep young children protected from heavy exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke. The bill would make it illegal for motorists with young children in the car to smoke while driving. This legislation specifically seeks to protect children who are still in car seats and booster seats.
Representative Henry Genga stated that the bill would work to protect "those who don't have a voice." In addition, Genga mentioned a Harvard School of Public Health study in which it was discovered that rolling down car windows still wasn't enough to reduce the risk(s) from secondhand smoke.
What would the penalties be for being caught smoking in a car with young children? Currently, a first offense would land the offender a written warning. Any infraction afterward would result in a fine. Parents would not be turned over to the Department of Children and Families if they were found in violation of the rule, according to Representative Matthew Ritter. In addition, Ritter stated that smoking with a child in the car would not be grounds for police searching a vehicle.
Connecticut is not alone in passing bills restricting smoking around children—seven other states have proposed similar legislation.
Tougher E-Cigarette Law
Along with fighting to reduce children's exposure to tobacco smoke, legislators are also working to increase restrictions of e-cigarette usage. Currently, e-cigarettes are not heavily restricted in Connecticut; however, if the new bill passes, it could ban electronic smoking in all of the places that tobacco cigarettes are already banned now. The one exception is that this ban would not extend to the workplace.
The fact that the Food and Drug Administration has not yet started to regulate e-cigarettes has critics of the bill buzzing, citing that Connecticut should wait until FDA regulations go into effect before making such a move. Representative Ritter responded, "I do not believe that this is a bill that is so onerous and burdensome on those who like to vape that we have changed the rules of the game drastically"
An additional layer to this bill is that lawmakers hope to curb minors from using e-cigarettes by restricting adults from using the devices in public. Connecticut—like most states—already restricts the sale of e-cigarettes to minors; however, the fear from lawmakers is that minors will want to start electronic smoking if they see adults doing so in public.
Even though there are continued efforts to restrict e-cigarettes in public, the EverSmoke team will continue to provide electronic smokers and the general public with access to the latest information about how our smokeless devices work and the benefits they can offer. Please visit our blog for updates on these bills and other e-cigarette legislation.
Furthermore, we'll continue to sell our high-quality e-cigarettes, starter kits, e-liquid, accessories and more. Browse our site to see the EverSmoke difference for yourself, or contact us today to order your next e-cigarette.