We must stop evil crooks giving addictive vapes to our kids

Vape teenager. Young pretty white girl in a cap smoking an electronic cigarette opposite modern brown background on the street in the winter. Bad habit. Close up.

As the Prime Minister and as a parent there is nothing more important than protecting our kids from harm. 

That includes tackling threats to their health, so we need to face the grim reality that underage vaping has doubled in recent years.

Kids face a vaping crackdown in a bid to stop them getting hooked

Rishi Sunak says he doesn’t want his two young kids to be lured in by the colourful vape sticks

That’s why we have already made it illegal to sell vapes to under 18s.

But I’m clear that we need to go further.

My daughters are 10 and 12, and I do not want the way vapes are marketed, promoted and sold to be attractive to them.

I know that Sun readers will feel the same.

That’s why I am launching a new crackdown today to protect children and go after the rogue companies and online crooks who are putting vapes into their hands.

We will direct our new enforcement squad – backed by £3 million of government funding – to enforce rules on vaping, while also tackling underage sales of cigarettes.

They will conduct test purchasing in car-boot sales, discount shops, mobile phone shops, and online stores, with the power to remove illegal vaping products.

And we’ll look at making it easier to issue fines to shops selling vapes to under 18s illegally.

We will close the legal loophole which allows unscrupulous retailers to give free samples of vapes to under 18s.

We will review the sale of nicotine-free vapes to under 18s because they can be a gateway to kids trying e-cigarettes that do contain nicotine.

And some products marketed as ‘nicotine free’ have alarmingly been found to contain nicotine.

We will also update the health education curriculum to teach kids about the harmful effects of vaping, just as schools currently do with smoking and excessive drinking.

The PM has said that he doesn't want his daughters to be seduced by vapes targeted at kidsThe PM has said that he doesn’t want his daughters to be seduced by vapes targeted at kids

And we will work with police forces to ensure dedicated school liaison officers across the country are using the new resources available to keep illegal vapes out of schools.

The measures I am announcing today will help keep our kids safe from illegal vapes – and I pledge that we will do more in the coming months.

The colourful vapes face being banned from kids