" Vapoureyes Heads up folks, no emojis this time, it's too serious: the South Australian government is trying to make Vapoureyes illegal, and they're about to succeed. In July of this year, the Tobacco Products Regulation Amendment Bill (2018) was introduced in the South Australian parliament. The bill redefines reality to turn ecigarettes into tobacco products (idiotic, right?), and in doing so it makes it illegal for South Australians to buy any vaping products online. No hardware, no juice, no accessories – it will even be illegal to sell batteries to South Australians if they're intended for use in an ecigarette.
The bill is currently before parliament (literally right now, today) and will be passed into law within the next two weeks. At this stage absolutely nothing can stop this legislation from passing, it has full support from both major parties, despite an incredible amount of opposition from the vaping industry and individual vapers. The government has essentially made it clear that they have no intention whatsoever of listening to your concerns, and they don't care how much economic and social damage they do to South Australia by passing this poorly constructed legislation.
It's hard to overstate how devastating this legislation is going to be for vapers in South Australia. You will no longer be allowed to purchase vaping products online whatsoever, whether you order from a South Australian business like Vapoureyes or an interstate business. The government fully intends to pursue and destroy any businesses that sell vaping products to South Australians, even if that business is located interstate. Regardless of what they say in public, the truth is that they want to deny you the ability to vape and this is how they're planning on doing it.
The most disgusting thing about this abhorrent legislation is that it disproportionately impacts the people who can least afford to be impacted: people living in rural and regional areas who are hundreds of kilometres away from their nearest vape store, the elderly and those living with disabilities who aren't able to leave the house, shift workers who aren't able to visit a store during normal business hours – all of these people and thousands more will be completely cut off from any access to vaping hardware and eliquids, and many of them will be forced to return to smoking.
Make no mistake: this bill will kill people. There are people alive today who are trying to quit smoking by switching to vaping who will eventually die from smoking-related illnesses because the one quitting method that worked for them is no longer available, thanks to this government's refusal to listen.
As for us, well, we can see the writing on the wall. Vapoureyes is Australia's largest independent vape store and we've been proud to service over a hundred thousand Australian customers over the last five years, and we have absolutely no intention of stopping. But it's clear that we can no longer continue to operate in South Australia, and unfortunately for us that means leaving the state for greener pastures. Although we're not fully committed to leaving just yet, the likelihood is that Vapoureyes will be forced to relocate to another state in order to continue operating.
And it's not just us: AVATAR estimates that this legislation will cause 50 to 100 people to lose their vape industry jobs in the next few months, and South Australia will lose between $30,000,000 and $60,000,000 in economic benefits from online stores leaving the state or shutting down competely. This is a burden on all South Australian tax payers. We'll have a lot more to say about this legislation in the coming weeks, but for now we encourage all of you, whether you live in South Australia or not, to sign up" for the AVATAR mailing list so that you can get involved in vape advocacy and make your voice heard.
Retailers can buy and sell products as they will be licensed, just no mail order to customers.
And SA Vapers banned from ordering Vape gear from interstate - although I just dont see how they could possibly police that - unless they threaten interstate stores of huge fines if caught. There will be nothing to stop friends sending "pressies" to friends in SA though. so there will always be a way for our SA friends but sadly its looking grim for the smokers not in the loop.
The bill is still not passed so I guess there is a small sliver of hope until it is done.