A Derby headteacher has welcomed plans to ban disposable vapes as schools across the country have seen an alarming rise in young people taking up the habit.
Jenny Brown, of Derby Cathedral School, in Great Northern Road, is part of a group of headteachers from across the city who have been working together to tackle the problem of young people vaping.
Now she has praised plans unveiled by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to tackle this issue by introducing the ban.
Secondary school headteachers have been working together in a city-wide collaboration to raise awareness. This has included a week’s worth of assemblies and the distribution of toolkits to highlight the dangers of vaping, which include addiction, anxiety and trouble concentrating.
Welcoming the latest announcement, Mrs Brown said: “We’re really pleased. In Derby we’ve worked hard as a group of headteachers, across all of the secondary schools, to campaign about the dangers facing young people with vapes, so we’re really pleased to see this Government action.
“It’s a real problem for young people and schools across the country have seen a rise, so it is vital that action is taken now before there are long term health repercussions. Children need to understand the dangers, but when vape manufacturers are specifically targeting them – with bright packaging and fun flavours and scents – it can be really hard to resist.
“It’s only with Government intervention to restrict these flavours and to produce plainer, less visually attractive packaging that the appeal for young people will decrease.”
The ban is part of the Government’s plans to tackle the rise in youth vaping, after figures revealed that the number of children using vapes in the past three years has tripled.
Last year, £1.3bn worth of disposable e-cigarettes were sold in Britain, according to recent data.
About a fifth of children aged between 11 and 17 had tried vaping as of 2023, up from 14 per cent in 2020 before the first Covid-19 lockdown, according to Action on Smoking and Health.
A smaller proportion, 3.6 per cent, vaped more than once a week, the ASH data showed.