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State Senator

Saud Anwar

Representing East Hartford, Ellington, East Windsor and South Windsor

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Senator Anwar Addresses Letter to Attorney General Tong, Requesting Lawsuit Against JUUL Labs, Inc. for Deceptive, Misleading Marketing of Vaping and E-Cigarette Products

Today, State Senator Saud Anwar (D-South Windsor) addressed a letter to State Attorney General William Tong requesting that the state consider filing a lawsuit against JUUL Labs, Inc., a producer of electronic cigarettes and vaping products, charging that it has engaged in deceptive marketing that targets underage individuals. Senator Anwar’s call for a lawsuit comes after similar lawsuits were filed against JUUL Labs, Inc. in New York, North Carolina and California and amid a public health crisis that has sickened thousands of Americans and killed dozens.

“JUUL has engaged in unscrupulous practices that have essentially hooked a substantial portion of a generation on the highly addictive chemical nicotine,” said Sen. Anwar in the letter. He continued by noting JUUL’s candy- and fruit-flavored vaping products are appealing to youth and do not clearly state their products contain high amounts of nicotine.

Sen. Anwar’s request comes months after news reports indicated that Juul Labs, Inc. may have knowingly targeted youth and underage audiences with their marketing practices in recent years, and also comes as a survey this month found more than 25 percent, or one in four, of high school students vape, with 60 percent vaping using Juul-branded products. More than 2,000 people have been hospitalized with vaping-related illnesses, with dozens dying, nationwide – including dozens hospitalized in Connecticut and at least one death traced back to vaping product use.

The full text of the letter is included below. _ Dear Attorney General Tong,

I respectfully request that you consider filing a lawsuit against the electronic cigarette company JUUL Labs, Inc. on the grounds that the company has engaged in deceptive marketing practices and has targeted underaged individuals.

JUUL has engaged in unscrupulous practices that have essentially hooked a substantial portion of a generation on the highly addictive chemical nicotine. The company offers candy and fruit flavors that appeal mainly to young people like mango, strawberry and crème brulee. The product they sell is also easily concealable from parents, teachers and other adults and to the unsuspecting eye may look like a USB stick. Furthermore, their extensive marketing campaign fails to make it clear to a young audience that their product contains high amounts of nicotine.

The National Tobacco Survey estimates that there are over five million combined middle school and high school students across the country using electronic cigarettes. Currently, JUUL has over two-thirds of the market share for these dangerous devices. This issue is of the utmost importance to the public health and wellbeing of an entire generation. I look forward to hearing from you about this issue and hope you will consider pursuing action on the behalf of the citizens of the State of Connecticut. Respectfully,

State Senator Saud Anwar

 

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