Students Provide Perspective in State Bill

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New York State Senator John Brooks and Legislative Director Francis Palasieski spoke with several ninth grade Freeport High School students to discuss their research on the dangers and potential health implications of vaping. With their ideas in mind, Sen.  Brooks plans to initiate a bill that he will send to the New York State Legislature to help curb the vaping epidemic that is sweeping the nation. Those who joined the discussion included Brenna Igneri, Jillian Igneri, Sameerah Lawal, Kylie Noboa, Karina Rios and Elise Smith, as well as their teachers Dr. George Anagnostopoulos and Mr. Michael Smith.

Their recommendations for the bill included the mandated reporting of underage vaping, colorful nicotine devices to make vape products more identifiable, the regulation of online purchases to prevent underage purchases, the regulation of distribution locations concerning proximity to child-friendly locations, restrictions on the advertising of vape products toward underage target markets with the use of colorful and enticing propaganda, an increase of age limit from 18 to 21 for the purchase of vape products, the regulation of nicotine levels in vape products and e-cigarettes, and the requirement that all vape product labels must fully indicate the dangers of the drugs, including both the addictive dangers and the effects on the teenage brain.  

Brooks expressed to students how impressed he was with their research and suggestions to the bill. “You’ve done a super job with this and came up with a lot of good ideas,” he added. “I think the important thing about this is the industry is going to have a hard time criticizing as it’s coming from you. The fact that this is coming from the students is one more example of your generation’s leadership. I think the senate is going to be impressed with what you’ve done.” 

Brooks will call the bill “The Red Devil Act” and hopes to get it to the Legislature by May 16 to propose as a potential law. This would be a tremendous honor for student participants if the bill passes.