E-cigarettes: a threat to public health?


Serena Paulson, Managing Editor

Recently, there was a survey sent out to all of the students and staff of Ames in regards to their personal opinions on e-cigarettes and vaping devices. It may not be well known, but the survey was sent out from the Mayor’s Youth Committee, a group of high schoolers connected with the local government for various projects, to collect tangible data on what the people of Ames want. Cities such as Duluth, Minnesota, Rochester, New York, and Madison, Wisconsin, have all passed city-wide bans of such devices in the past year and MYC wants Ames to follow in their footsteps.

“E-cigarettes a type of vaping device that gives you nicotine and chemicals like normal cigarettes that are supposed to only give off water vapor, which isn’t true,” said Hannah Bloch, a senior member of MYC. “We want to ban them being used in public in Ames because we don’t know the negative side effects they can have on the population over time.”

Partnering with PPSI, or the Partnerships of Prevention Science Institute, and GSB, the government student body at Iowa State, the MYC is trying to work with the City of Ames in passing an ordinance banning E-cigarettes and vaping devices in public places. Last Wednesday, February 4th, it was presented to Iowa State in a meeting to ban all e-cigs usage on campus. Representatives Ashley Sitzman and Alissa Watters went in order to present the information gathered from the high school showing the discomfort from the use of e-cigarettes and vaping devices.

“I think it is really important that we recognize the relevance and potential of such an ordinance and pay attention not only to public policy in Ames, but in other cities as well. Just because many high schoolers aren’t allowed to vote doesn’t mean our voices shouldn’t be heard,” said Nadia Huffman, another member of MYC.