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LETTERS

State urged to act on sales of e-cigarettes to minors

 

RE “Tax plan on ‘e-cigarettes’ scrapped” (Metro, Jan. 13): I applaud state Representative Jeffrey Sánchez for the House bill that would correctly classify e-cigarettes as nicotine products and prohibit sales of them to minors.

According to data released by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in September, e-cigarette use doubled among US middle and high school students from 2011 to 2012, with 1.8 million students reporting that they tried e-cigarettes at least once.

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E-cigarettes expose children and teenagers to nicotine, which causes adverse effects on brain development and may be a gateway to use of cigarettes and other harmful tobacco products. The overwhelming majority of middle and high school e-cigarette users also smoke cigarettes.

As a pediatrician, I fully support regulation of e-cigarette sales to minors, and I hope that Massachusetts regulators will make the right decision to protect the health of our youth.

Dr. Tamara Baer

Boston