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State Attorneys General Ask Streamers To Protect Youth From Tobacco Imagery

teen vaping

The National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) sent letters in August 2019 to streaming video services, requesting that they protect young streamers from tobacco imagery.

Letters were sent to Walmart, Viacom, Lionsgate, Sony, Netflix, Google, The Walt Disney Company, Discovery, Comcast Corporation, CBS Corporation, AT&T, Apple and Amazon.com.

On-demand content contains more tobacco imagery than broadcast shows or traditional content, according to the Truth Initiative and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The United States Surgeon General says there is a link between tobacco imagery and the “initiation of smoking among young people.” Over half of PG-13 films which were released between 2002 and 2017 contained tobacco imagery.

The letters, which were signed by 43 state and territory attorneys general, noted a recent, significant increase in young people using tobacco, particularly JUUL E-cigarettes, saying this increase makes it critically important for public health that the streaming industry makes efforts to prevent young people from initiating the use of tobacco products.

The state attorneys general recommended that tobacco imagery be excluded or eliminated from streamed content for young streamers. They also recommended that only tobacco-free content be recommended or designated for young and family audience. Lastly, they recommend that parental controls be improved and that the negative influence of tobacco imagery be mitigated.

State attorneys general have taken action in the past targeting tobacco being marketed to youth through popular media. The Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement prohibited tobacco manufacturers from targeting young people through promotions and ads in 1998.

Medical providers throughout the country have recently seen a rise in mysterious lung illnesses which appear to be linked to the use of vaping products. The CDC issued a statement in August 2019 acknowledging 193 potential cases of severe lung illness associated with the use of vaping devices. The number of reported vaping-related lung injuries has increased significantly since the CDC statement, with nearly 500 cases now having been reported in the U.S.

As of this post, six vaping-related deaths have been reported across the Country, including one in Los Angeles County.  Seizures and strokes have also been reported among JUUL users. JUUL Labs is currently facing lawsuits on behalf of users who suffered vaping-related injuries. Our law firm is also investigating injury and death claims related to the use of THC and CBD vaping devices.

An American Stroke Association study found a 71% higher risk of stroke associated with e-cigarette use, as well as a 59% higher risk of heart attack or angina and a 40% higher risk of coronary heart disease.

If you or a loved one has experienced a vaping related injury, call Nadrich & Cohen now at 1-800-718-4658 for a free consultation.

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