Gubernatorial candidates clash on raising vaping age


On the campaign trail to become Missouri’s next Governor, one physician and candidate criticized his democrat opponent's proposal to raise the age for vaping from 18 to 21.

Speaking yesterday to a group at the Cameron Veterans Home, gubernatorial candidate Dr. Jim Neely decried Nicole Galloway's recently-announced vaping plan as "a slap in the face to young Veterans across Missouri."

"I tend to think that anyone old enough to serve in the military should be allowed to make their own health decisions," said Dr. Neely, an Army veteran and physician who now serves as a Republican State Representative. "Part of the reason that we all served is to protect the freedoms we have in the United States."

The candidates for governor in Missouri
disagree about raising the vaping age

Dr. Neely has been advocating for the state's public high schools to formally institute "No Vape November," a month during which teens can turn in their vaping devices without being punished.

One public school in the Ozarks is already allowing its students to hand-over their vaping devices with no consequences.  Officials at Reeds Spring High School say "No Vape November" is making a positive impact for students.

"We just wanted to take a different approach to that and show kids that we do care about their well-being, we're not here to get them in trouble," Reeds Spring Principal Dr. Isaac Sooter said.

In only four school days, students turned in 15 vapes voluntarily.

Dr. Jim Neely visited with World War II medic
Bill Pollard at the Cameron Veterans Home

"I have to commend Reeds Spring High School for encouraging students to take control of their own health," said Dr. Neely. "No Vape November is something we need to institute at public high schools across Missouri."

Neely will pre-file legislation to address teen vapinging in December. The legislative session begins in January 2020.

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