Across Asia Pacific, an estimated 5 million adults vape, with most of them being former smokers who have either quit smoking completely or have cut down significantly using their preferred devices and liquids. In almost every case, they did so against the advice and in defiance of the highly restrictive, disproportionate regulations and bans that continue to be imposed on safer products.
The smoking and unsafe tobacco use pandemic has been going on for at least 50 years, and claims 20,000 people per day globally. It rages on despite being something that can be easily addressed through effective public health policy. The cause is the use of toxic tobacco products as a way of obtaining nicotine. The enormous harm associated with nicotine is almost entirely due to the way people get it rather than the nicotine itself.
Meanwhile, the world is battling another pandemic, COVID 19, which has ravaged economies, destroyed lives and compromised health agencies and systems across the globe. The Covid-19 pandemic has focused global attention on the need for rational measures to reduce risks, effectively treat those afflicted and develop vaccines. This is entirely consistent with longstanding public health goals of reducing risks wherever they are found, and the importance of empowering people to improve their health.
The Question: “If governments trust the science on COVID, why are they not trusting the science of THR?”
Our latest webinar provided an overview of the current status of tobacco harm reduction across Asia Pacific, and provided testimonials from those who dared to follow their own lead to be smokefree. The panel discussion on the handling of the smoking pandemic that kills over 8 million people a year globally and how it differs from the way governments have been dealing with the COVID pandemic, was also a great success..
Julie graduated from Duke University School of Law in 1986. She is a retired lawyer, & has been involved in tobacco harm reduction advocacy since early 2009. Julie has been an active member of CASAA (The Consumer Advocates for Smoke-free Alternatives Association) since its inception in 2009. She held the position of President of the Governing Board of INNCO from 2018, and transferred to the position of interim Secretary General of the Secretariat in 2020.
Nancy is a passionate THR advocate who co-founded Aotearoa Vapers Community Advocacy (AVCA) New Zealand in 2015 to legitimately fight for the right to vape and have that choice available for all smokers. She is also the executive coordinator of the Coalition of Asia Pacific (Tobacco) Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA) where she applies her experience in THR advocacy to guide and mentor consumer advocates throughout the Asia Pacific region and beyond.
Jena has a solid background in the publishing industry, joining Mosman Communications Inc. and MEDCOM International in 1992 as Founding President at the age of 28. At the 2014 Stevie Awards for Women in Business held in New York, she was recognized as the Female Executive of the Year in Business Services – Global Category, a first for the Philippines. We are fortunate to now have her working alongside us in the THR advocacy community to present our voice to the global media.
We need to unite globally as one, in order to let our voices be heard. As consenting adults, we have every right to choose the way we live our lives, including alternatives to tobacco. WHO, we’re not invisible. If you think we are, you’re dead wrong about it!
Vaping and other forms of smoking alternatives, which have been scientifically proven to be less harmful, are a godsend for those who find it impossible to quit. As consenting adults, we have every right to choose the way we live our lives, including choosing alternatives to quit smoking.
A solution to the world’s smoking problem is already here, we just need the WHO to listen.
We understand that going against a global body such as the WHO may seem daunting, but take a look at their history and tell us if that’s an organisation that should be in charge of worldwide health guidelines, such as tobacco harm reduction efforts.
We need to unite globally as one and let our voices be heard.
Our right to health is recognized as a fundamental international human right. Realise that smoking causes the vast majority of tobacco‐related death and disease. #HarmReductionisAHumanRight
We, the people, demand that regulators and policymakers –