By: Brandon Gillet & James Lipsett
There are no rules to prevent the use of E-Cigarettes by students or staff in Algonquin’s buildings. That’s according to Brad Zanth, Chief of Security Services at Woodroffe campus.
“There is no College policy on electronic cigarettes and there have been no reported concerns,” Zanth said in an email.
Further, when asked about the devices, workers at Algonquin said they’ve received no training or guidelines in regards to them.
While Health Canada has banned the sale of reloadable units, which can have nicotine content, the college does not restrict their use in classrooms or anywhere else on campus.
These devices use an atomizer (vaporizer), to create mist from a liquid solution, which can contain varying levels of nicotine content. They come in various styles and flavors ranging from classic tobacco, to fruit and Red Bull. There are two general options: reloadable and disposable.
The disposable device can be purchased at most gas stations, smoke shops and convenience stores. Unlike the re-usable device, the throwaways contain no tobacco content whatsoever.
They are available as single unit devices or with a removable atomizer and come in a smaller variety of flavors such as, classic, menthol, and vanilla. The disposable form is less potent than the more expensive reusable option, but still holds validity in kicking the habit.
The second option is the reloadable device. These products can be found online on various brand websites such as juicyejuice.com and joyetech.com and offer a wider range of options than their disposable counterparts.
But are they safe? While nobody the Times interviewed could confirm their safety one way or the other, Registered Nurse Kim Gillet who was a smoker for more than 20 years swears by the nicotine free option.
“Works for me because nicotine is the addictive chemical in tobacco, after 72 hours all the nicotine is out of your body when you quit so you don’t want to put it back in.”
Further, information online is mostly provided by the companies that make the devices.
The liquid is typically made from a mix of propylene glycol and vegetable glycerine, containing varying levels of nicotine or none at all. Reloadable e-cigarettes produce more of a vapour cloud than disposable units and provide the user with more of a throat hit.
For the most part, students like them. “The fact that using an e-cig gives you the same feeling of using a cigarette is useful for people trying to quit,” said Hellen Tait, a television broadcast student at Algonquin.
Business major Dave Badgrass agrees, saying “They help you quit smoking, man.”
Some will also tend to believe that the use of a vapour-emitting product should be unacceptable in smoke-free locations such as malls and restaurants, even though clouds of vapour do not technically constitute as smoke.
“Using these would work for certain types of people, but people with addictive personalities may not benefit from its easily accessible use inside,” said bartending student Devin Knox.
Student Nico Deschamps disagrees.
“They should be allowed indoors because they emit vapour, not smoke.”
As general arts and science student Myriam Maheux says, “They’re enjoyable and healthy to use without giving off second hand smoke.”