On December 5th, 2015, Vapers and Business owners came together for a rally in protest of the pending regulations being applied to Bill 45, Schedule 3 (Electronic Cigarette Act). Several hundred were in attendance in attempts to send a clear message to the Ontario Associate Minister of Health and Long-Term Care (Long-Term Care and Wellness), Hon Minister Dipika Damerla, the sponsor of the bill.
Hundreds of thousands of Canadians have quit smoking in the last few years with the aid of Electronic vaporizers. The government of Ontario has passed Bill 45 (Royal Assent on May 28, 2015) that effectively classifies these devices as a tobacco product. Vaping is NOT smoking. There is no smoke nor is tobacco in a vape and the science quickly catching up with the technology.
On January 1st regulations are supposed to go into effect (though no date has yet been proclaimed by the Lieutenant Governor) in Ontario that will harm the success of those wishing to make the switch from smoking to vaping. Retailers will no longer be allowed to have their customers test the products in store, which is essential to the success of each person quitting smoking. Vape retailers agree that the vaping industry needs regulations. They however believe that the regulations need to be based on fact and research and not hidden agendas. The Government of Ontario says that they want a smoke free Ontario but they have granted exemptions for big tobacco.
The Pending Regulations in Bill 45 do not make sense. We need fair and equitable regulations in Ontario. Calgary and Winnipeg have exemptions for Vape shops. Ontario should follow suit. Not only will this legislation put thousands of people in Ontario out of work, this legislation as is will deter thousands from quitting smoking in 2016.
There are many photos and videos that have been posted from the event but a couple of them are posted below.