Graph showing number of vapers who would change their vote.

Breaking News: Vaper Activism Pays Off with EU Vote Against Ecig Ban

Back in July, when a EU committee voted for the ban on e-cigarettes, I wrote that the fight would go on.

It did, with a huge wave of vapers across Europe writing to their MEPs, many of whom reported receiving hundreds of letters from constituents.

Vapers also garnered support from some MEPs, including the very active Rebecca Taylor of the Lib Dems and Martin Callanan of the Conservatives, who not only supported vapers but advised us on how to campaign against the ban.

Many of the letters were so informed that some anti-nicotine campaigners claim they couldn’t possibly come from ordinary e-cigarette users but must be from tobacco stooges.

Many vapers also indicated that they were prepared to change their vote to defend their right to vape:

Graph showing numbers of vapers who would change their vote to defend their right to vape.

All this work has paid off.

Today, the EU has voted against medicalising electronic cigarettes.

As Dr Farsalinos wrote on e-cigarette research:

In what should be considered a historic moment, the European Parliament rejected the proposal of the ENVI committee to regulate e-cigarette as medications. The decision allows some regulation (which is of course essential) without jeopardizing the existence, evolution and accessibility of e-cigarettes.

Source: E Cigarette Research

Once again, unfortunately, the battle is not over.

The Electronic Cigarette Industry Trade Associations believes the regulations are not ideal (but can be improved upon) while there are threats in the UK from the big pharm dominated MHRA. Clive Bates, former director of Action on Smoking and Health, has argued that the amendment that was passed (170) is far from ideal, although better than medicilising e-cigarettes.

But if you were one of the thousands who wrote to your MEPs, and helped defeat medicalisation – Well Done!

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4 thoughts on “Breaking News: Vaper Activism Pays Off with EU Vote Against Ecig Ban

  1. received email today
    Dear East of England resident,

    Andrew has asked me to contact you with the result of today’s vote on the Tobacco Products Directive (TPD). He has been contacted by hundreds of individuals about the Commission’s proposals for regulating electronic cigarettes as pharmaceutical products.

    In Andrew’s view regulation of this kind is expensive and in some EU countries would make it impossible to buy e-cigs except in a pharmacy. He can’t see the sense of restricting the sale of e-cigarettes when tobacco cigarettes – which have a far more harmful effect on health – can be bought everywhere.

    For this reason Andrew has been working with his Liberal colleagues and MEPs of other parties in recent weeks to put forward an alternative that would attract majority support in Parliament. The compromise amendment that we finally tabled was designed to ensure that e-cigarettes are safe devices to use, but objected to the proposal that they be regulated as pharmaceutical products. The amendment also stated that e-cigs had a major role to play in reducing tobacco-related deaths.

    Today the Parliament supported this position by 362 votes to 298. The compromise amendment was therefore adopted.

    This is good news. Although a year ago Andrew could not have told you what e-cigarettes were, today he regards these electronic devices as a potential game-changer in the fight to reduce smoking-related disease.

    Now attempts must be made to find a compromise between the European Parliament and national governments in the EU Council of Ministers.

    You might also be interested to know that a 65% combined health warning size was adopted for tobacco products, and a health warning will now be displayed on the top of the package, not the bottom.

    In Andrew’s view the adoption of the Directive is a clear success against the tobacco lobby which wanted to see this Directive postponed into the next legislature.

    Thank you once again for contacting Andrew to raise your concerns about this issue.

    Yours sincerely,

    Kilian Bourke

    Kilian Bourke
    Caseworker to
    Andrew Duff
    Liberal Democrat MEP for the East of England

  2. That is good news. I watched the report about the ECigs on Breakfast this morning everyone seemed in favour of them…

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