PETALING JAYA: The Education Ministry should introduce a new syllabus to educate students at primary and secondary schools on the dangers of vapes and nicotine, says the Consumers Association of Penang (CAP).
In a statement Sunday (July 2), CAP said it was an urgent issue to educate the students as the number of smokers and vapers among their peers was on the rise.
The full text of the statement can be read below:
THE Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) is calling on the Education Ministry to introduce a new syllabus on the dangers of vape in primary and secondary schools.
This is an urgent issue to educate the students.
Day by day, the number of smokers and vapers in Malaysia, especially among school students, is increasing.
According to the Health Ministry, 43,000 secondary school students and 341 primary pupils are smokers, which is not a good number for Malaysia.
In Malaysia, there are already five million smokers, 1.5 million vapers and, now, the statistics show that 43,019 secondary school students and 341 primary pupils have been found to be smoking cigarettes.
Now the Health Ministry exempts nicotine as a controlled substance under the Poisons Act.
CAP has received complaints from parents and teachers that teenage children are buying vaping products that contain nicotine because the government removed the substance from the Poisons Act from April 1.
Children can now walk into any vape shop to buy a vape product that contains this poison.
There is no logic in removing nicotine from the list of poisons and there has also been no rise in the tax on cigarettes for the past seven years.
We may see increased numbers of new smokers due to lower prices.
A CAP survey also shows that the number of smokers and vapers at secondary, primary and university level is alarming.
The number is increasing day by day because it is easily available anywhere.
Every corner of the country there is a shop that sells this product. Now, roadside stalls are also selling it to kids.
During CAP’s anti-smoking and danger of vape talks, many students admitted that they do not know the dangers posed by nicotine, which can be found in cigarettes and vape liquids.
CAP suggests that we need a new syllabus on the dangers of tobacco and vape liquids which contain nicotine.
Many primary pupils admitted that the liquids for the vape are fruit flavours, but these are actually chemical flavours laced with nicotine.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) there are 16,000 chemical flavors which contain nicotine on the market.
The victims are school children and it is time to save these innocent children.
Education Officer and Anti-Smoking Activist
Consumers Association of Penang (CAP)
Source: The Star