Sorry, electronic-cigarette smokers.
Take it outside.
Philadelphia City Council on Thursday unanimously approved a bill that would add e-cigarettes to the city-wide smoking ban.
An accompanying bill, which also passed, prevents the sale of e-cigarette devices to minors.
Both bills still require Mayor Michael Nutter’s signature to become law, which is expected.
City Councilman Bill Greenlee, who was the key sponsor of these bills, emphasized the lack of an FDA approval as a red flag.
“This is a totally unregulated product," he said. "And the fact that we don’t know what’s in it, I think we ought to err on the side of caution. We’re not banning the product. What we’re basically doing is saying, in public places, you need to step outside.”
"I think one of government’s roles is to protect people," he added, "and to protect the health of people."
Gregory Conley, who is a New Jersey native, confessed at city council to be an ex-smoker who now prefers e-cigarettes. He pulled out his device and appeared to have given the members of council a demonstration.
After the bill passed, he said the ruling is exactly what he expected.
"Ultimately, this bill is about deceiving smokers into thinking e-cigarettes are just as hazardous or nearly as hazardous as smoking," he said.
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