KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Ministry is ready to collaborate with the Education Ministry to tackle vape addiction among students.
Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa said the collaboration would include conducting awareness campaigns and providing education on the dangers of such products to children.
“The Health Ministry is concerned with reports that a significant number of children are addicted to smoking vapes owned by their families. Therefore, we will expand awareness campaigns related to this issue and are ready to collaborate with the Education Ministry,” she told Berita Harian today.
She said this in response to the disclosure made by the Consumers’ Association of Penang (CAP) regarding a significant number of children addicted to vaping despite not owning the device.
Previously, CAP’s findings revealed that children were being lured into vaping by their fathers and elder brothers.
CAP education officer and activist, N.V. Subbarow said children aged 9 to 12 admitted to trying vapes and e-cigarettes belonging to their fathers or brothers when at home or in the car.
This was revealed by the children themselves who participated in CAP’s smoking, vaping and e-cigarette awareness programme which was conducted in several primary and secondary schools in Penang.
“Out of the 300 children found by CAP during the nicotine-free programme for children, 200 of them admitted to vaping twice a week,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dr Zaliha said family members played a crucial role in addressing vaping addiction among children.
“Parents should monitor their children’s behaviour, and older or teenage family members should also bear the responsibility. They should not introduce or encourage children to try their vapes.”
Source: New Straits Times