Lawmakers should act in the interest of public health
February 12, 2021 Bozeman Daily Chronicle
I am deeply disappointed that Dr. Jane Gillette, Jedediah Hinkle, Caleb Hinkle and Jennifer Carlson all voted in support of House Bill 137 in the Montana Legislature. This bill, and one like it, House Bill 106, threaten to roll back protections against indoor use of e-cigarettes, including safeguards we currently enjoy right here in Gallatin County, Big Sky, Belgrade and Manhattan. Those who support these bills clearly do not have the best interests of our local communities in mind.
I’m particularly worried about the impact these bills will have on young adults, teenagers and children in our communities.
If these bills pass, we who live in these communities will lose our rights to enjoy the clean indoor air that we have been breathing for years now. Our precious lungs — young and old alike — will be exposed to aerosol that contains cancer-causing chemicals and heavy metals such as nickel, tin and lead. None of us would be safe.
Further, these bills, sponsored by Rep. Ron Marshall, the co-owner of three vape shops, seek to prevent Montana’s local communities from taking any future actions that would protect our children from being targeted with e-cigarettes and other emerging tobacco products that are no doubt already in Big Tobacco’s new product development chain.