The State of Minnesota has filed a lawsuit against e-cig maker JUUL for creating a nuisance and deceiving, addicting, and harming the state's young people.

While the number of cigarette smokers has dropped significantly over the past 15 years (20.9% in 2005 to 13.7% in 2018, according to the CDC), the number of e-cig users has spiked drastically.

According to Truth Initiative, 27.7% of high schoolers admitted in 2019 to using an e-cig in the last 30 days compared to 11% of high schoolers in 2017. Perhaps even more frightening is the increase in use by middle schoolers; 10.5% admitted to using an e-cig in the last 30 days in 2019 compared to just .5% in 2011.

The e-cig brand JUUL in particular has seen a surge in popularity over the past three years, owning 64.4% of the e-cig market as of October 2019, according to Nielsen. Promoting itself as a “satisfying alternative to cigarettes,” JUUL has put an entire generation at risk of nicotine dependence and abuse. In the past year, 40 people have died from vaping-related injuries including 3 in Minnesota.

Now, the State of Minnesota is taking action, with Attorney General Keith Ellison and Gov. Tim Walz announcing Wednesday that they are filing a lawsuit against JUUL to ""hold [the company] accountable for the vaping epidemic they started in Minnesota."

"My job is to protect Minnesotans from deceptive, fraudulent, and unlawful practices, and to protect their health and safety," Bring Me the News quotes AG Ellison.

“My job is to protect Minnesotans from deceptive, fraudulent, and unlawful practices, and to protect their health and safety," AG Ellison continues. "It’s especially important for me to protect our young folks from deception and harm. I’m bringing a lawsuit against JUUL today because it has created a public nuisance that is centered around deceiving, addicting, and harming our young people."

"Students across the state tell me they feel preyed upon by JUUL," added Gov. Walz. "As a father of two teenagers and Governor of Minnesota, I’m saying enough is enough. We’re going to hold JUUL accountable for the vaping epidemic they started in Minnesota."

According to Bring Me the News, the State of Minnesota is demanding the JUUL fund a corrective public education campaign in Minnesota about the dangers of youth vaping, provide "monetary relief" for "great harm and injury" it has allegedly caused in Minnesota, and reimburse the state for "all its expenditures" relating to controlling e-cig use among Minnesota's youth.

Source: Bring Me the News

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