The Virginia Smoke Free Association is about fighting for the rights of Virginia residents wishing to reduce the harms to themselves and their loved ones from tobacco usage through the use of personal vaporizers (electronic cigarettes).
The Virginia Smoke Free Association is an advocacy group and trade organization with a focus on Tobacco Harm Reduction (THR) through the use of personal vaporizers (electronic cigarettes) and other smokeless tobacco products shown to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with smoking. We focus on the prevention of tobacco harm and seek to cooperate with the Virginia Health Agencies to function for the greater health of the Virginia public as well as monitoring the legislation for or against our movement of tobacco harm reduction.
The VSFA launched in 2015 to provide support and education regarding alternative methods of THR after seeing many years of failed attempts by our public health agencies to reduce smoking rates in the state. Membership is open to vaping industry businesses located, or with a business interest, in the Virginia market. Participation in organizations like this is key for survival in this industry.
What are Electronic Cigarettes?
Electronic cigarettes (also known as e-cigarettes or personal vaporizers) are an alternative to tobacco cigarettes. They are battery-operated devices that create a mist or vapor that is inhaled instead of smoke. The rechargeable battery powers a heating element called an “atomizer.” The element uses low heat to turn liquid in the cartridge, which contains propylene glycol, glycerin, food flavoring and nicotine, into a fog-like mist.
There are many models of e-cigarettes available. Some look like traditional cigarettes, others look similar to a pen and some even look like small flashlights. Some have LED lights, some have built-in liquid reservoirs, others have combined atomizer cartridges, some are tubular and some are even rectangular boxes. They come in all shapes and sizes and have different features for former smokers who wish to distance themselves from anything resembling a traditional cigarette or want a longer battery life and/or better performance.
What is Tobacco Harm Reduction?
Tobacco Harm Reduction is a complimentary approach seeking to prevent or reduce the overall harm caused by smoking combustible tobacco products. We base our approach on the recognition that many people throughout the state continue to smoke combustible tobacco products despite the strongest efforts by our health agencies to prevent the continued use of these products. Tobacco Harm Reduction (THR) takes a unique approach at educating the public and users of smoked tobacco on ‘Switch and Quit’ methods of using reduced harm tobacco products. Keeping people who use smoked tobacco healthier while preventing irreparable damage caused by smoking is regarded as our top priority.
Principles of THR
Our approach to Tobacco Harm Reduction is based on a strong commitment to public health and basic human rights. Tobacco Harm Reduction refers to policies and practices that target the reduction of adverse health and social consequences of the legal use of tobacco. Tobacco Harm Reduction benefits all current users of tobacco products including their families, friends and the wider Virginia community.
Dignity and Rights
The VSFA is nonjudgmental and will fight for the rights of all Virginia residents and vendors wishing to reduce the harms resulting from smoked tobacco usage. Users of smoked tobacco are people we all know mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, friends or coworkers. These users do not give up their basic human rights simply because they have chosen to smoke. Ignoring science and technology due to opposing morals and beliefs deliberately inflicts harm on people who smoke tobacco products. This approach creates and exacerbates risk and harm for the users.
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