A new digital campaign to discourage school-aged children from vaping is being rolled out to schools across WA.
The Department of Education and the Department of Health have joined forces to create an anti-vaping toolkit for WA schools, which will be fully implemented by Q4 2022.
The toolkit, based on an NSW Health model, contains resources for school staff, students, parents and caregivers to educate them about the health effects of vaping.
It is aimed particularly at secondary schools, but the resources will be useful to all schools and made available to the public and non-governmental sectors.
For schools and their staff, the toolkit will include information on strategies to minimize student vaping and how to explicitly identify where vaping can be further addressed in the curriculum. Professional learning opportunities for school staff have also been developed in collaboration with the Ministry of Health.
Young people are encouraged to learn the facts and dangers of using e-cigarettes and vapes, which are often toxic and may contain harmful substances found in cleaning products, weed killers, nail polish removers and insect repellents.
“Vaping is a growing concern for parents and school communities in Western Australia,” said Sue Ellery, Minister for Education and Training.
“E-cigarettes and vapes are designed to appeal to young people, in colorful packaging and a wide variety of flavors – from gummy bears and bubblegum to fruits like watermelon and peach. They are also easy to conceal.
“There are many misconceptions around vaping that need to be addressed, including that it produces harmless vapor, is non-addictive, and contains no nicotine.
“It’s important that schools play a role in educating students and families to dispel some of these misconceptions, and these new resources will provide further guidance for teachers on what they can do to highlight the impacts. harmful.
“As with the smoking of previous generations, we may not see the full effects of vaping for a decade or more, so it is important that we act now.”
In Western Australia, it is illegal to sell e-cigarette devices and nicotine vaping products to anyone, regardless of age, unless prescribed by a doctor for smoking cessation purposes and obtained by prescription from a pharmacy.