TORONTO, Nov. 6, 2023 /CNW/ – Rights4Vapers, Canada’s largest vapers’ rights movement, calls on the Government of Ontario to refrain from jumping on the taxation bandwagon and penalizing Ontarians who vape even more.
“We are at a critical moment for vapour products. We are being attacked from every angle,” said Maria Papaioannoy, spokesperson for Rights4Vapers. “All we want is for adult Canadians who smoke to have an affordable less-harmful choice. Signing on to the federal government’s proposal to add a matching provincial excise tax to vapour products will increase a 60 ml bottle of e-liquid by $10 to $44.95. We must keep vapour products affordable.”
The province said that taxation is a “proven and well-established approach to deterring the consumption of products that pose health risk.” We would like to ask the finance minister what health risks is he talking about exactly. Vaping is 95 percent less harmful than smoking.
“The smoking rate in Ontario is 9.9 percent – an all-time low – just below the national average of 10.3 percent. Clearly the government is losing money. Fewer people smoke. Less tobacco tax collected,” said Ms. Papaioannoy. “So, what do they do? Target the only real harm-reduced product on the market and drive up the taxation on it. Maybe they want to get people smoking again? It’s mindboggling that the Ontario government is not seeing the bigger picture.”
Our opposition to dramatic increases in taxation is based on the premise that vapour products are an effective tobacco harm reduction tool and a proven method to help adult smokers quit smoking, as such they should remain as affordable as possible. Any increase in price closes the gap between vapour products and cigarettes. A cheaper vapour product is much more appealing to an adult smoker than a cigarette – especially to someone who is looking for an alternative to smoking.
Any additional tax on vapour products will simply move sales into the black market. We know that the criminals who sell illegal vapour and tobacco products do not comply with any safety regulations, nor do they collect taxes, and, perhaps most concerning of all, they have no problem with selling any product to minors.
“Ontarians who vape deserve so much better than to be treated as a piggybank to fill government coffers. All we want is an affordable alternative to smoking. The finance minister will be hearing this message loud and clear in the weeks ahead,” said Ms. Papaioannoy.
Rights4Vapers is an organization of vaping advocates dedicated to the advancement of Canadian based research on vaping. Rights4Vapers is the voice of Canadian adult vapers, 98 percent of whom are former smokers.
SOURCE Rights 4 Vapers