Media: take the opportunity of amending the law on the protection of minors to expand the achievements of tobacco control

The law shall come into force as of June 1, 2021 after the amendment is approved by the 22nd Meeting of the 13th NPC Standing Committee. Tobacco control personages believe that it is a far-reaching adjustment and an important milestone in the process of tobacco control in China to clarify the provisions on tobacco control in the non insurance law.

although the laws and regulations of Shenzhen and Hangzhou have included e-cigarettes in the scope of public places, the national legal texts have not included e-cigarettes before, and the recently passed non insurance law is the first national law written into e-cigarettes. Article 17 of the law stipulates that “parents or other guardians of minors shall not allow or instigate minors to smoke, drink, gamble, vagabond and beg or bully others”.

this provision is a kind of reminder or education for parents or other guardians of minors, that is, it is illegal for minors to smoke electronic cigarettes, otherwise, they may be punished by law. The greater significance of this provision is that it is a good start for other national laws and more local laws and regulations to prohibit e-cigarette, which makes the legislative organs at all levels aware of two points: first, e-cigarette is harmful to health; second, it is a trend to legislate to ban e-cigarette.

at the same time, this regulation can also promote more public, relevant enterprises, policy makers, law enforcement agencies and other aspects to reach a consensus on the harm of e-cigarette. At present, although the relevant parties, news and public opinion have repeatedly popularized the relevant knowledge of e-cigarettes, which has changed many people’s wrong understanding of e-cigarettes, there are still many people who smoke e-cigarettes, and many local enterprises produce e-cigarettes illegally. It is hoped that the revised law can reverse the development trend of e-cigarette.

in addition, Article 59 of the law stipulates that tobacco, alcohol and lottery sales outlets shall not be set up around schools and kindergartens. It is forbidden to sell cigarettes, alcohol, lottery tickets to minors or cash lottery prizes No one is allowed to smoke or drink alcohol in schools, kindergartens and other public places where minors concentrate. The purpose of this regulation is to create a good environment for minors not to buy cigarettes or smoke, and further enhance the health protection of minors.

However, we cannot expect a few provisions in a law to prevent tobacco from harming minors. According to the results of the tobacco survey of Chinese middle school students in 2019 released by China Center for Disease Control and prevention, the smoking rate of junior high school students is significantly lower than that of junior high school students, but the use rate of e-cigarettes is significantly increased. This result is more worrying than happy. More measures should be taken in view of the “significant increase in the use rate of electronic cigarettes among junior high school students”.

at the legal level, in addition to amending the non insurance law, other relevant laws and regulations should also further strengthen tobacco control. For example, we should not only be consistent with the non insurance law, but also make more detailed and effective provisions. For example, a few years ago, it was a key legislative project, but it has not been officially promulgated. The law is the most powerful weapon for tobacco control, so we should take the opportunity of amending the unprotected law to improve the relevant laws in time.

law enforcement. Shenzhen issued the country’s first e-cigarette ticket, which has been widely praised by public opinion. After the implementation, some data show that the number of adult smokers has decreased significantly, which is also conducive to the protection of minors’ health. However, tobacco control is a “protracted war”, and the smoking rate still needs to be reduced. Therefore, it is necessary for the relevant parties to adjust according to the non insurance law and local regulations, so as to effectively enforce the law and cooperate with the legislation.

in addition, it is necessary for economic policies to be consistent with the spirit of relevant legislation. For example, since e-cigarette is included in the national laws and some local regulations, can the e-cigarette industry make timely adjustments? Such as controlling scale, adjusting flow direction and standardizing propaganda. In recent years, a series of tobacco control measures from legislation to law enforcement have achieved certain positive results, but we should take the opportunity of the amendment of the unprotected law to continuously expand the achievements of tobacco control. Caricature / Chen Bin=“ ” target=”_ blank” rel=”noopener”>Focus