Michigan officials cite public health crisis in response to halt on vaping ban

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FILE – In this April 11, 2018 file photo, a high school student uses a vaping device near a school campus in Cambridge, Mass. Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker is declaring a public health emergency and ordering a four-month temporary ban on all vaping products in the state. The Republican governor made the announcement Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019 amid growing concern about the health effects of vaping products. (AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)

LANSING — Top Michigan officials are issuing statements in response to the Court of Claims’ issue of the preliminary injunction that has stopped Michigan from enforcing its emergency ban on vapes.

The first death due to a vaping-related lung injury in Michigan was confirmed by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Oct 4.

“This decision is wrong. It misreads the law and sets a dangerous precedent of a court second-guessing the expert judgment of public health officials dealing with a crisis. The explosive increase in youth vaping is a public health emergency, and we must do everything we can to protect our kids from its harmful effects. I plan to seek an immediate stay and go directly to the Supreme Court to request a quick and final ruling. I took bold action last month to protect public health, and several states and the White House have followed Michigan’s lead because they know how urgent this is. Enough is enough. Our kids deserve leaders who will fight to protect them. That’s exactly what I’m doing today.”

— Governor Whitmer

“We are resolute in our efforts on behalf of Governor Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services to protect the health of Michigan’s children.  The youth vaping crisis is an urgent public health matter that demands immediate action.  To that end we are preparing to seek an immediate stay and will seek leave to appeal the judge’s decision directly to the Supreme Court.”

— Attorney General Dana Nessel

“This ruling is deeply concerning and a threat to Michigan’s public health. There is no question that youth vaping is a public health crisis. The data is overwhelming, and we’re getting new information every day that reinforces that the Governor and MDHHS were correct to take swift action to protect our kids from the harmful effects of vaping.”

— Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive for MDHHS

As of Oct 8, the Centers for Disease Control reported 1,299 vaping-related lung injuries in 49 states, D.C. and one territory.

The report includes 26 deaths in 21 states as well as findings that suggest THC played a role in the outbreak. Eighty percent of the 26 individuals who were interviewed reported vaping with THC-containing products.

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