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Calls for tighter legislation to stop Island children vaping

Credit: Chiara Summer

Businesses tell Manx Radio they won't stock disposable vapes

More work needs to be done on the Isle of Man to discourage children – and teenagers - from vaping.

That’s the view of the public health director who says he has ‘huge sympathy’ with parents facing the challenge.

It’s also a view shared by two local vaping businesses which have stopped selling disposal vapes.

New data shows a decrease in the number of school children in England taking drugs and smoking cigarettes.

However the study by NHS Digital shows a rise in vaping – with a nine per cent increase in the number of children, aged between 11 and 15, who are using e-cigarettes or vapes.

Professor Hugo Van Woerden, who has responsibility for Public Health on the Isle of Man, told Manx Radio it’s a ‘difficult’ situation and he sympathises with parents:

On the Isle of Man there is currently no age restriction on the sale of e-cigarettes and vaping products.

But local businesses are taking a stand and enforcing their own rules.

Giles Day is the owner of Offshore Vapes, on Strand Street in Douglas – he told Manx Radio he won’t sell to anyone under the age of 18.

His website is also age restricted and he actively refuses to stock disposable vapes which are popular with youngsters – in part due to their prevalence on the social media platform TikTok.

He told Lewis Foster that some retailers could do more to stop teens picking up the habit:

Another Manx business which refuses to sell to youngsters is Royal Vapes.

The company is owned by Joe Turner who used to have a shop in Douglas but now trades solely online.

Over the last seven years he’s sent in excess of 50,000 parcels to America where vaping is heavily restricted.

Joe told Manx Radio whilst vaping is safer than smoking he doesn’t believe children should be doing it.

He's also highlighted the damaging environmental impact of the items:

During the month of October people who are keen to give up smoking are encouraged to try ‘Stoptober’ with the NHS noting that vaping is far less harmful and can ultimately help some people quit for good.

Whilst support on Island is targeted at adults Public Health has confirmed there is help available too for young people who want to give up.

Anyone who wants more information should contact 01624 642404.

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