The Toronto Transit Commission has banned all vapor advertising in its properties. This move brings the Commission in line with the Provinces level prohibition on vapor advertising in all ages businesses such as convenience stores and gas stations in order to deter youth vaping throughout Ontario.
While opposition to the move might have been expected due to the loss of visibility to the transit system’s roughly 1.7 million daily riders, the Canadian Vapor Association has signaled its support. CVA President Samuel Tam said:
“I think it’s the correct step to take. We don’t need our Canadian youth to be exposed to the advertising that’s out there.”
Approximately 10 percent of TTC’s customers are age 19 or under, according to reporting from the CBC.
Ontario officials have asserted that, “vaping among Ontario’s youth is on the rise.” According to authorities, underage vaping increased by 74 percent between 2017 and 2018.
Tam sees advertising in non- age restricted retailers as part of that, and would like to see that remedies by restricting vapor advertising to adults only retailers. Tam said:
“We know kids are always congregating at convenience stores to buy their products and gum and candies and I think those restrictions are very important.”
Keeping the advertising in retailers where only adult consumers can see it, in theory, could inform adult smokers of the less harmful alternative without tempting minors. Says Tam:
“Canadians should have the privilege to know that vaping is less harmful but I think the challenge is how will we be able to still deliver that message without exposing our youth.”
Vapor products adverts currently seen on TTC properties will be pulled at the ends of their current contracts.