A call to action: Save vaping!
Hold onto our civil rights!
On the 26th of February the European Parliament allowed the Article on electronic cigarettes of the Tobacco Products Directive to pass. This controversial, rushed and unacceptable legislation born of ignorance endangers the future of vaping on national levels as well as on European level, putting the health of millions of European citizens at risk.
The list of the problems with this new regulation that cry out loud for remedy is practically endless:
- ▪ It leaves about the 25% of current and future electronic cigarette users behind, completely ignoring their needs.
- ▪ It imposes arbitrary limits on consumer choice, based on misinterpreted scientific evidence.
- ▪ It enforces safety measures that protect from nothing but instead create new problems.
- ▪ It bans solutions that are results of natural product evolution and answers to valid consumer needs, pushing an industry segment back to its stone age.
- ▪ It introduces such manufacturer and vendor regulations that practically halt further product developments.
- ▪ It opens loopholes for the national governments to circumvent the fact that electronic cigarettes are not medicinal products, a fact backed by the European Parliament, court verdicts, science and common sense.
- ▪ It allows member states to violate basic principles of the European Union.
- ▪ And so on...
Our goal is to express the will of the many, who are already vaping, plan to vape, have a loved one who is vaping or someone who simply respects the values of private sphere and personal rights. We will keep fighting until electronic cigarettes are finally to be discussed at the level they deserve, and until a regulation is born that says no to fears rooted in ignorance, and does not bypass scientific evidence nor the real needs of the people using electronic cigarettes.
Vapers made an adult, responsible and private decision when they chose this young but very effective alternative that made possible for them to leave or ease up a deadly habit that claims hundreds of thousands of lives of EU citizens each and every year. The fact that vaping poses no harm to the vicinity of the vaper makes this hobby a private matter of no public interest, therefore any kind of attempt towards the regulation of electronic cigarettes and related products is interpreted as serious offense against our personal rights and private sphere.
The message is simple and clear: hands off of free vaping in the European Union. Read more about it in our manifesto.
Our weapon of choice is the European Citizens' Initiative, a mechanism provided by the EU that allows its concerned citizens to express their common opinion on how the European Parliament should approach certain subjects, in this case: vaping.
What is EFVI?
An opportunity for vapers to directly address the decision makers of Europe so they can choose to ignore our opinion no more. We need to collect one million signatures before the 25th of November 2014, and reach the minimum quota in seven member states.
What EFVI is not
EFVI is not an another petition to sign. It allows us to participate directly in the development of EU policies regarding electronic cigarettes.
Why is EFVI important?
Once successfully concluded, we will have the opportunity to meet Commission representatives in person and to present our initiative at a public hearing in the European Parliament.
Members of the citizens' committee:
Patryk Bełzak (Poland), Kinga Bilau (Hungary), Monika Calvetti-Fürst (Austria), Leo Compas (Netherlands), Ditta Ditewig (Netherlands), John Miles Dolphin (United Kingdom), Marcin Duraj (Poland), Scott Andrew Fitzsimmons (United Kingdom), Stavros Georgalas (Czech Republic), Marcel Göertz (Netherlands), Markus Kämmerer (Germany), Udo Laschet (Germany), Krisztian Pifko (Hungary), Serge Poplemon (Belgium)
Our initiative at the Official register of the European Commission.
We, the vapers of Europe and supporters of the subject, demand electronic cigarettes and its related products, regardless of its nicotine content, to be classified as general purpose recreational products through legislation, once and for all, and strictly not as medicinal, tobacco or any other kind of products that would limit or impair the vapers' access to and use of electronic cigarettes and related products.
The potential outcome of the classification of electronic cigarettes and related products other than general purpose recreational products would effectively lock electronic cigarette related small businesses out of the market by handing the future of vaping into the hands of an industrial group that is not just uninterested in sustaining the current quality levels and wide range of selection but is counter-interested in serving the needs of users of vaping devices.
Vapers made an adult, responsible and private decision when they chose this young but very effective alternative that made possible for them to leave or ease up a deadly habit that claims hundreds of thousands of lives of EU citizens each and every year. The fact that vaping poses no harm to the vicinity of the vaper makes this hobby a private matter of no public interest, therefore any kind of attempt towards the regulation of electronic cigarettes and related products is interpreted as serious offense against our private sphere and personal rights. The matter of electronic cigarettes is intriguing solely for vapers, their close environment, manufacturers and vendors, no other parties should be concerned, in which scope the recent attempts for regulation and the whole overly serious approach towards electronic cigarettes make no sense at all.
The vast majority of vapers keep vaping as a hobby after successfully stopped smoking. We would love to make it very clear: it is not a smoking cessation device, it is a device for recreational purposes that makes it utterly easy to stop smoking and stop seriously harming yourself and your environment while you do it, effectively ending up with a harmless and fun activity.
Anyone who actually knows these devices, their effectiveness and its positive impact on quality of life, vapers have been experiencing for years, cannot find a reason born in good faith that justifies a classification as a medicinal or tobacco product. Especially so since other products with well known and proven harmful effects are kept being freely available to the public.
We do understand however, that in the long run it imposes a serious threat on government treasury incomes and profits of industrial groups intertwined with public health. We understand it and we could not care less. What we care for is our free will, the freedom of choice, and the real protection of the health of ourselves and others in our environment.
Therefore we ask the honored members of the European Commission to form their opinion considering all of the above, with regards to the classifying of electronic cigarettes and related products, and to propose legislation accordingly, to lay down the foundations of free and unrestricted vaping for Europe, by supporting the following conditions:
- ▪ allow all existing vapers of Europe to keep on vaping - the same way vapers living in member states where vaping is unregulated do - without legislating any significant negative impact on the availability and diversity of vaping products;
- ▪ allow all future European vapers to experience the same rich culture of vaping that we now enjoy in member states where vaping is unregulated;
- ▪ allow affected manufacturers and vendors to stay in business, without being either crippled or burdened with unnecessary time and money consuming licensing procedures in conjunction with to electronic cigarettes and related products.
Vaping should remain free the same way it was during the past years. Do not restrict or regulate the use and distribution of electronic cigarettes, cartridges and refill liquids in the European Union.
- ▪ Allow all existing vapers of Europe to keep on vaping - the same way vapers living in member states where vaping is unregulated do - without legislating any significant negative impact on the availability and diversity of vaping products.
- ▪ Allow all future European vapers to experience the same rich culture of vaping that we now enjoy in member states where vaping is unregulated.
Allow affected manufacturers and vendors to stay in business, without being either crippled or burdened with unnecessary time and money consuming licensing procedures in conjunction with to electronic cigarettes and related products.