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Quit, Cancer Council Victoria and VicHealth commend the next wave of vaping legislation to spell the end of illegal sales of vapes

Posted 21 Mar, 2024

Public health organisations Quit, Cancer Council Victoria and VicHealth strongly support the new Bill tabled in Parliament today designed to protect young people from the harms of non-therapeutic vaping products. 

Thursday 21 March 2024.

 Quit stands behind the Government’s intention to:

  • stop importation, domestic manufacture, supply, advertising and commercial possession of non-therapeutic and disposable vapes 

  • introduce new criminal offences and civil penalty provisions to ensure that legal authorities have the necessary power to effectively enforce Australian laws 

  • reduce risks for those wishing to use vapes on prescription to assist with quitting smoking. 

Todd Harper AM, CEO Cancer Council Victoria welcomed the proposed changes.  

“The prescription model for vaping in Australia has never had the full chance to succeed due to so many unscrupulous retailers flouting the law. The regulations that have gone into place over the past few months have turned off the tap on importation of vapes into the country. This new Bill, when passed, will finish the job—to make sure non-therapeutic vape manufacturers don’t set up in Australia instead. It will also pave a pathway for effective enforcement and enable authorities to shut down sale of all vapes outside the pharmaceutical prescription process. It will ensure kids won’t have to walk by vape shops on their way to school.”  

VicHealth CEO Dr Sandro Demaio added, "This legislation highlights the urgency required to protect young people from e-cigarettes, which are specifically designed to appeal to young people and threaten to unravel decades of Australia’s hard work in tobacco control.” 

Rachael Andersen, Quit Director commented on the window of opportunity to prevent a new generation of people becoming dependent on nicotine.  

“If we’d known a generation ago what we now know about cigarettes, they would never have been allowed onto the market, and millions of lives would have been saved worldwide. We now have that opportunity with vaping. If we can prevent a new generation of young people from getting hooked on nicotine, then why wouldn’t we? Industry groups who say otherwise should be called out for putting profit before people, and dollars ahead of health.”  

Harper concluded that the Government’s strong stance on vaping was crucial to maintain Australia’s global leadership in tobacco control.  

“Australia’s bold legacy in regulation of tobacco marketing such as getting tobacco out of sports sponsorship, ending display of products in neighbourhood stores and inventing plain packaging have paved the path for other countries to follow suit. Australia’s reasonable, proportionate, precautionary approach to regulation of vaping products, will also provide important lessons internationally. Along with many other public health groups, we urge the Australian Parliament to finish the job and pass this crucial Bill.” 

Legislation is one thing, but it must happen in tandem with support for people who want help to quit nicotine and prevention efforts with young people including in schools. We urge the Australian Government and state and territory governments to continue to fund public education campaigns to help young people to better understand the health risks of vaping.  

For free, confidential support to quit smoking or vaping, contact Quitline on 13 78 48 or visit

Write to your local MP urging them to support this important next step in vaping reform:  

Quit recently released Victorian curriculum-aligned resource Seeing through the haze for year 7-10 students. This important resource will soon be expanded to include late primary years with a focus on preventing the uptake of vaping.  

Media contact 
Prue Gildea 
M: 0400 394 274 


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