Reducing tobacco related harm (including e-cigarettes)

Reducing tobacco related harm (including e-cigarettes)

Project: Mt Clear College – Vaping

In an Australian survey of school students, around 14% of students aged 12 – 17 years had used an e-cigarette (32% of these in the past month).  Almost half (48%) of students who vaped had never smoked tobacco before trying an e-cigarette.  Around a quarter of these students who had used e-cigarettes before ever smoking, reported later trying tobacco cigarettes.

Electronic cigarettes, or ‘e-cigarettes’ are known by a variety of names, including ‘vapes’, ‘Juuls’, ‘vape pens’, ‘e-shisha’, ‘pods’, ‘mods’, and often (by children) the specific product name, e.g., ‘Juuls’ or ‘Puff Bars’. E-cigarettes are battery powered devices that heat a liquid (called an ‘e-liquid’ or ‘juice’) until it aerosolises. The user then inhales the aerosol. The e-liquid ingredients vary, typically containing chemicals, including solvents and flavouring agents, and may or may not contain nicotine, which affects their legal status. Most e-liquids labelled as ‘non-nicotine’ have been found to contain nicotine when tested. It is safest to assume that all e-liquids do contain nicotine, which is addictive and, if ingested, toxic. BCH wanted to make people aware of the risks associated with vaping and e-cigarette use, and in particular, young people.

We worked with Year 10 Media students from Mt Clear College to produce three videos about vaping for young people by young people:

A young girl is dropped off at school and instead of going into school, she leaves the school grounds to go buy a vape from a person in the bushes. Instead of paying with money she has a loyalty card. She’s already used most of the offers available on the card and the only choice she has remaining is health or family. She did not want to choose family so chose health. She is willing to sacrifice her health to buy a vape. Afterwards she is seen calling her mum on the phone, saying she needs to talk to her.

Three boys are going for a ride in the bush on their bikes. One of the boys is finding it difficult to keep up with his friends. He is wondering if vaping is what is stopping him from keeping up. He knows that his friends don’t vape, and he is thinking about why he does. Is not being able to keep up because of vaping?

A group of young people are talking about games they like to play. One of them starts talking about a new game they have started playing. Something to do with vaping. The group look at him and say they aren’t into that sort of thing. They then continue their conversation and ask the guy to come and join in with them.

The project was aired on national TV with Sunrise running a feature story.

Special thanks to:

for their support of this project.

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