(BIVN) – Vaping, and the proximity of shops to Waimea schools, was the subject of a panel discussion at a town meeting on Thursday.
This media release from the Waimea Community Association set the stage for the forum:
Electronic Smoking Devices (ESDs) – or e-cigs – are not “new” but they’ve exploded on the scene in Waimea with now three operating vape shops including a “vaping lounge” near three schools. Also, some Waimea schools report a sharp increase in students bringing to campus vaping paraphernalia, which the State Department of Education considers “contraband” at Hawai’i public schools.
Like cigarettes, ESDs are kapu on K-12 school campuses and the number of confiscated items that have resulted in suspensions is on the rise. Further, as of 2012, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that 1.78 million school kids had at least tried e-cigarettes.
So what exactly is an ESD? And what does it mean in terms of health and wellness for North Hawai’i, where many volunteers are working together to become a “Blue Zone Approved” region – a place where residents live longer better due to healthier choices that are supported by public policies, programs, services and infrastructure.
Uncertainty about e-cigs – and numerous phone calls from Waimea families alarmed about the close proximity of a vape shop to several schools – prompted Waimea Community Association to plan a panel discussion themed “Blowing Clouds – Getting Smart When It Comes to Vaping” as the main agenda item at its 5:15 p.m., Thurs., March 1, 2018 Town Meeting in Waimea School Cafeteria.
The March 1 town meeting panel discussion about vaping will include two Waimea vape shop operators, plus Dr. Gary Goldberg, Chief Medical Officer at North Hawai’i Community Hospital, Kohala Elementary School Principal Danny Garcia, Sally Ancheta with Hawai’i Public Health Institute and a representative of Hawai’i County law enforcement.
The discussion will include recent scientific studies about the “popcorn effect,” and the use of e-cigs in combination with tobacco products and cannabis.