Next on the Toronto Board of Health’s hit list: e-cigarettes

Next on the Toronto Board of Health’s hit list: e-cigarettes

(Image: Michael Dorausch)

These are the wild-west days of e-cigarettes. For the time being, there are no real social or legal conventions to govern where a person can use them. Toronto restaurant and bar patrons are learning to cope with the alarming sight of people blowing smoke indoors with impunity. (In reality, the stuff that comes out of e-cigs isn’t smoke at all; it’s a vapour of propylene glycol and glycerin.)

Except now it seems like the vapoury good times are coming to an end: according to the Sun, the Toronto Board of Health is preparing to release a report on e-cigarettes this spring.

While there’s no guarantee the board will recommend a full or partial ban on indoor e-cigarette use, there’s a good chance that’s what will end up happening. Just last month, the board released a report asking the city to study banning indoor use of shisha at Toronto’s hookah bars. City council would have final say over whether either ban were to be enacted.

It’s not hard to imagine the rationale for an e-cigarette ban. The long-term health effects of using the things haven’t been firmly established. They’re still regarded with trepidation by Health Canada, which doesn’t allow them to be sold in Canada if they contain nicotine—though nicotine-free products are legal, for the time being.

Any e-cig users who don’t want to find themselves banished, like their tobacco-incinerating brethren, had better start lobbying now.