N.B. schools target vaping among young people
FREDERICTON -- It might be banned, but underage vaping is still on the rise in New Brunswick.
It's so concerning a trend that it was included in the Speech from the Throne.
"Government will work with health specialists and advocates to develop a strategy to combat youth vaping in New Brunswick," Lt.-Gov. Brenda Murphy said during this week's Throne Speech.
Some schools in the province have already been fighting back against the use of vaping among their students.
"Over the summer, we decided we needed a call to action on this topic," said Anglophone South School District Supt. Zoe Watson.
This fall, the Anglophone South School District launched its vape-free school campaign to educate parents and students about the risks. They've installed signage directed at high school and middle school students.
The New Brunswick Health Council (NBHC) recently released the results of a survey of students between Grade 6 and Grade 12 about vaping -- in all of New Brunswick's seven health zones. The percentage of students who say they've tried vaping has increased from 2015-2016. In New Brunswick as a whole, the NBHC reports that number jumped from 22 per cent to 29 per cent in 2018-2019.
"It's going to be very important for those working around this strategy to really understand these numbers, to understand these trends and whatever measures do come out, there needs to be some clarity as to what it aims to achieve," said NBHC CEO Stephane Robichaud.
Watson says, if there is a provincial strategy and the school district can get support from that, that it's positive.
"But as a district, Anglophone South decided we needed to take action," Watson said.