New laws banning the sale of electronic cigarettes to children come into effect in NSW today.
The Public Health (Tobacco) Act 2008 was amended in June, creating restrictions on the sale to minors, display and advertising of e-cigarettes and e-cigarette accessories.
Changes to the Act will be implemented in two stages:
· Banning the sale of e-cigarettes and accessories to and on behalf of minors, restrictions on vending machine locations and the power of police to seize an e-cigarette in possession of a person under the age of 18 take effect today.
· Display and advertising of e-cigarettes and accessories and the ban on the use of e-cigarettes in cars with children under the age of 16 present will come into effect on 1 December 2015. This date will allow for a public education campaign and for retailers to prepare for advertising and display requirements.
Health Minister Jillian Skinner said the NSW Government introduced the new legislation as part of its commitment to protect the health of young people and children.
“Following our re-election in March, we moved immediately to ban the sale of e-cigarettes and e-cigarette accessories to minors. Further amendments tightened restrictions on how e-cigarettes are displayed and advertised,” Mrs Skinner said.
“We have also moved to address community concerns e-cigarettes may act as a gateway to tobacco smoking for children.”
NSW Health has written to retailers and key industry organisations to ensure they are aware of the new laws and NSW Health inspectors will provide education as part of routine visits to retailers.
NSW Health inspectors will also monitor compliance with and enforce the new legislation, with the exception of seizing e-cigarettes from minors and enforcing bans on the use of e-cigarettes in cars with children under 16, which will be enforced by NSW Police.