Thursday, 27 February 2020
That the Senate—
(i) recent media reports that teenagers are taking up vaping under the misapprehension it is safe, and that concerned parents support a ban on the supply, sale and use of all e-cigarette products in Australia,
(ii) that it is legal to sell only nicotine-free vaping liquids in Australia,
(iii) that, while the sale of e-cigarette liquids containing nicotine is not legal in Australia, it is legal for a person to import a three-month supply of liquid containing nicotine for personal use,
(iv) that it is a simple task for anyone under the age of 18 to access vaping paraphernalia, including e-liquids containing nicotine, via online retailers, and
(v) a 2018 study in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health cautioned vaping may have a "gateway effect" to cigarette use, with two-thirds of the young people surveyed stating a preference for e-cigarettes containing nicotine;
(b) further notes that:
(i) the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) issued a warning to consumers in January 2019 regarding undisclosed by-products and toxic ingredients including nicotine in e-liquid sold in Australia, despite being labelled 'nicotine-free', and
(ii) the TGA warning was prompted by a study, published in the Medical Journal of Australia, which stated there is little to no regulation of
e-cigarette manufacture, and the frequency with which nicotine is detected in e-liquids labelled "nicotine-free" was concerning; and
(c) calls on the Federal Government to:
(i) regulate the manufacture and labelling of e-cigarette liquid to ensure safety and consistency of ingredients in imported and
domestically-available products, and
(ii) ban the importation of e-cigarette liquids containing nicotine.
We oppose this motion. Currently, importation of vaping solutions containing nicotine is illegal. There is one exception, allowing an individual to import three-months personal supply of e-cigarette liquid containing nicotine, provided they have obtained a prescription from their doctor. One Nation supports the sanctity of the doctor-patient relationship. If a doctor thinks vaping nicotine is likely to help their patient quit smoking, they should be allowed to be prescribed that. Every state and territory, except for Queensland, has enacted regulations to give effect to this principle. If these products are available on the wider market and if they are being used illegally, it is up to the states to police and enforce their existing laws.