Florence One Schools superintendent wants more S.C. districts to join JUUL lawsuit

Updated: May. 24, 2021 at 8:56 PM EDT
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FLORENCE, S.C. (WMBF) - Florence School District 1 has joined a class action lawsuit against e-cigarette company JUUL.

The lawsuit claims the company’s marketing, advertising and product design targets minors.

Superintendent Dr. Richard O’Malley said JUULs have become a major problem in high schools and middle schools.

“I think getting in earlier grades than just high school really got scary, and it really helped us make a decision because if you look at how they marketed it on Cartoon Network, magazines to preteens, they were going after this with an addiction in mind,” O’Malley said.

O’Malley said students don’t understand the consequences of e-cigarettes JUULs can cause extreme addiction and potentially dangerous lung conditions.

O’Malley said it’s the district’s responsibility to keep students safe and he believes this lawsuit is the only way to get e-cigarettes out of schools.

“You have to send a message, and let them know that you’re not going to use our kids to market these products to,” O’Malley said.

Florence 1 is one of several South Carolina districts to join the lawsuit. And hundreds of others across the country have also be added to the class-action lawsuit.

O’Malley hopes to see other school districts in the Palmetto State join the fight.

“Because I think a united front by everyone will send a very powerful message to these companies and stop future companies from doing this as well,” O’Malley said.

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