Emanuel Announces Lawsuit Against Online Sellers of E-Cigarettes and “E-Juices”

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Education

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Education

Mayor Rahm Emanuel joined Corporation Counsel Ed Siskel, Business Affairs and Consumer Protection Commissioner (BACP) Rosa Escareno, and Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) Commissioner Julie Morita, MD to announce that the City of Chicago will file suit against eight online sellers of e-cigarette products for illegally selling their products to Chicago youth. The lawsuit, which were filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County on Tuesday, is one of several initiatives designed to combat the illicit marketing and sales of e-cigarette products to Chicago’s young people. The City is undertaking a series of targeted actions against companies that are involved in the marketing and distribution of e-cigarettes to Chicago youth, as CDPH data shows equivalent or higher usage among young people than traditional cigarettes:

Lawsuit Against Online Retailers Selling to Minors: The City’s lawsuit will be filed against eight online retailers who were caught illegally selling e-cigarettes to underage Chicago residents. Each of these companies sold e-cigarette products directly to an underage Chicago resident in the past month via the Internet as part of a joint sting operation conducted by BACP and the Department of Law.

Locations Cited for Selling to Minors: BACP has taken enforcement action against 15 Chicago-based retail stores who were caught selling e-cigarette products to underage Chicago residents. Each retailer was cited for violating the City’s ordinance prohibiting the sale of these products to persons under the age of 21 and was referred to Administrative Court.

Letters to Retailers and Manufactures to Cease Deceptive Marketing: The Department of Law and BACP sent letters to thirty-three manufacturers and retailers of e-cigarettes and “e-juices.” In each case, their products are sold in Chicago stores and that the City believes may be engaging in unlawful and deceptive marketing and sales practices targeting young people. The City requested documents relating to the companies’ marketing practices, youth use prevention practices, online and social media monitoring, product design, and online product sales policies, as well as the public health impacts of the companies’ products. 

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