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Oz Approach is Misguided

The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Advocates has praised Kiwi legislators for ruling out adopting the “misguided” approach being pursued in Australia

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The announcement that New Zealand would NOT follow Australia's lead to a full prescription model for nicotine vaping, further reinforces the country’s international standing on the issue of tobacco harm reduction and is good news says leading Kiwi consumer advocacy group, the Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Advocates.

We applaud Health Minister Ayesha Verrall and the Government’s balanced approach to ‘tweaking’ the regulations to suit the New Zealand situation and not be influenced by those who called her to simply follow Australia's lead in effectively banning vaping,” said Nancy Loucas, a prominent New Zealand public health consumer advocate and executive coordinator of The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Advocates (CAPHRA).

CAPHRA is a regional alliance of consumer tobacco harm reduction advocacy organisations. Its mission is to educate, advocate and represent the right of adult alternative nicotine consumers to access and use of products that reduce harm from tobacco use.

CAPHRA says it remains committed to advocating for the rights of consumers in the Asia-Pacific region to access and use evidence-based, regulated, and properly marketed harm reduction products as a means of reducing the devastating impact of smoking-related diseases.

We acknowledge that vaping is not completely harmless, but expert opinion is that vaping products are much less harmful than smoking tobacco,” Loucas added.

CAPHRA says it has always called for a balanced approach that recognises the potential of vaping to help smokers quit and contribute to New Zealand's Smoke-free 2025 goal. 

CAPHRA believes that a ban on recreational vaping in New Zealand, like that in Australia, would have been a giant step backwards in the fight against smoking.

We still believe that the government has a responsibility to activate the planned Public Information campaign around vaping - who it is for and why, with urgency, to avoid any further dissemination of disinformation by those who do not understand what this policy is about." said Ms. Loucas.

New Zealand is celebrated for its stance on tobacco harm reduction, and the Ministry of Health's Vaping Facts website provides credible information about vaping as a way to stop smoking.

The website states that vaping is much less harmful than smoking, and switching from smoking to vaping allows smokers to manage their cravings for nicotine without as many harmful toxins that come with smoking.

"We also acknowledge that the regulations were never meant to be cast in stone and would require revision as issues arose that would both protect the rights of people who use safer nicotine to stay off combustibles and protecting youth from accessing the products. The Minister’s announcement strikes that balance, and we are pleased to see this eventuate,” Ms Loucas concluded.

The Ministry of Health also recognises that vaping is an effective tool to help smokers quit, and that vaping products are regulated under the Smoke-free Environments and Regulated Products Act 1990.

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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