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Students take anti-vape push to Arizona lawmakers

(KTAR News Photo/Griselda Zetino)

PHOENIX — Dozens of Arizona students took the fight against vaping to the Arizona State Capitol on Thursday.

More than 50 students from across the state met with state lawmakers to push for legislation that would increase regulations on vaping. They said vaping has become a big problem in their schools.

“I do see it mainly in the bathrooms where they think they have privacy,” said Emily Mohr, a senior at Mingus Union High School in Cottonwood.

She said students also vape in class.

“They’ll just be wearing big hoodies, and they’ll put it in their sleeve,” she said, referring to vaping products. “They’ll take a breath and then just blow it back in their sleeve so you can’t see it.”

Mohr and the other students who were at the State Capitol on Thursday want state lawmakers to approve legislation by state Sen. Heather Carter, R-Cave Creek.

The bill would require retailers that sell vaping and tobacco products to be licensed. It would also classify vaping products as tobacco.

The students also said they support a bill by state Sen. Martin Quezada, D-Glendale, that would not allow ads promoting vaping products to be placed near schools.

The visit to the capital was organized by the American Heart Association, which has a nationwide ant-vaping campaign called #QuitLying.

Mohr said the campaign aims to raise awareness about the dangers of vaping, which she said the tobacco industry isn’t disclosing.

She noted one vaping pod has the same amount of nicotine as an entire pack of cigarettes. She added vaping is not a safe alternative to smoking, despite what the industry says.

“We want the tobacco industry to stop lying about what’s in these products and the harm that they can actually do,” she said.

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