September 18, 2019
This week, I announced the most expansive state vaping investigation known publicly to date. As many of you know, I spent the summer traveling the state to find out what was behind the dramatic increase in vaping among our youth. According to the Florida Department of Health, nearly one in four Florida high school students now admits to using e-cigarettes—students have said that rate is much higher.
One study found two-thirds of young persons didn’t even know vaping products contained nicotine. Now we are hearing about vaping-related hospitalizations around the country. According to a recent report, in Florida there have been 68 cases of vaping-related pulmonary illnesses.
As a mother, I cannot sit on the sidelines while underage vaping skyrockets and our next generation becomes addicted to nicotine. It’s illegal under Florida law to sell these products to anyone under 18, yet vaping among our youth is out of control.
It’s my job, as Attorney General, to protect Floridians and that’s what I’m determined to do. That is why we are investigating more than 20 vaping companies doing business in Florida.
Our investigation will focus on the marketing practices and online sales strategies of these companies to determine if they have intentionally targeted minors, tempting them to vape.
Our investigation must be thorough and will take time, but staggering statistics showing that vaping is a growing epidemic among our youth requires action now.
In the meantime, I urge all parents—talk to your children about the dangers of vaping. Working together, we can protect our children and build a stronger, safer Florida.