By Jenny Ferm
A national vaping group has filed a federal lawsuit against Governor Charlie Baker and Health Commissioner Monica Bharel in response to the ban placed on the distribution of e-cigarette products.
The Vaping Technology Association is filing for an immediate end to the ban, claiming it “unconstitutionally burdens interstate commerce”, according to a statement released by the group.
The Vaping Technology Association has more than 1,000 members, and is working to protect 2,500 employees in the vaping industry. They claim that the ban will destroy the nearly $33 million vaping industry, and harm many law-abiding employees and distributors.
The group also describes e-cigarettes as a healthy alternative to smoking conventional cigarettes, and argues that the ban will encourage users to turn back to cigarettes or obtain vapes through unregulated black markets.
There have been 13 confirmed deaths and over 800 reported lung illness cases connected to vaping and the use of e-cigarettes in the U.S. So far, 83 of those cases have occurred in Massachusetts.
Doctors are still unsure what directly causes these cases. The Mayo Clinic is conducting an ongoing research project, concluding that these illnesses are unlike any other tobacco or marajuana use cases.
Doctors are still unsure how to properly treat these cases, but the Department of Health strongly urges anyone using any type of vaping products to stop immediately.