More than 50 health and advocacy groups are sending a clear message in letters to US Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and first lady Melania Trump: Stick with the plan that was announced last month that would require e-cigarette companies to take their flavored products off the market, including mint and menthol.
According to an announcement Tuesday, the groups are responding to recent media reports that the Trump administration could back down from its earlier stance by including exceptions for mint and menthol. The US Food and Drug Administration has not yet finalized its compliance policy to take action on flavors.
Among the organizations that signed the letters are the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Heart Association, the American Lung Association, the American Medical Association, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
In the letters, the organizations say the policy would be “weakened” by such an exception: “A policy that does not remove all flavored e-cigarettes will not solve the current epidemic of youth e-cigarette use. Youth who now use mint and menthol e-cigarettes will continue to do so, and youth who use flavors that are removed from the market will simply switch to mint and menthol.”
Kristen Rogers and Michael Nedelman – CNN – October 29, 2019.