WHITESBORO, NY – Thursday was the first annual National #QuitLying Day.
#QuitLying is a national awareness campaign designed to hold leading vaping and tobacco companies accountable for misleading teens and young adults into believing it’s ok to vape.
The Whitesboro School District partnered with the American Heart Association to dedicate the day to teaching students about the dangers of vaping.
“Our kids are making these decisions based on these lucrative companies that are making money off of them, and them being adolescents and easily swayed,” says Corinne Rothdiener, physical education teacher.
“I think they’re marketing to our students, and the fact that they’re saying that vaping is a safe alternative to smoking when in all reality its really just another option for smoking. It’s now marketing to kids that would never have thought about using tobacco products.”
According to the Heart Association, the number of teens who vape has doubled in the past two years. One in four high schools students say they vape.
“Now that everything has started with the vaping and things like that, kids think it’s cool because of the flavors – because of all the campaigning, because everyone’s doing it to fit in,” says 11th grader Arysely Acevedo.
Students say today’s lessons about the health risks and dangers of vaping are helpful, because they are mislead by the tobacco and e-cigarette companies.
“I think it’s really going to help put into perspective what vaping can do to you, especially at this age, this young, and I know a lot of people in this school that do it. I think they’ll take a double take on it,” says 11th grader Aidan Daly. “I think it pushes them to say this really isn’t the thing we could be doing. We should be doing something different.”
“It’s a great step in what we’re trying to do – to try and combat against nicotine and against different products that are marketed to kids our age, and bringing light to how bad it can actually be,” says 12th grader Jacob Snodgrass.
Thursday, the students signed a petition to be sent to big vaping companies, saying they’re not ok with being targeted.
“It’s a statement to them that they don’t want to be targeted anymore. They don’t want somebody to take that choice out of their hands. They don’t want to be molded to think this is ok. They want people to understand the truth about vaping and what it can do to you,” says Rothdiener.