The New York City Council approved legislation Thursday that treats electronic cigarettes similar to tobacco cigarettes, by banning their use in indoor public spaces.
Many smokers have turned to the battery-powered cigarettes to help them quit, and the American Association of Public Health Physicians even recommends them to addicts as a way to quit, CBS 2 New York reported. Many e-cigs contain nicotine and they allow users to inhale vaporized liquid nicotine instead of tobacco smoke.
The ban will go into effect in four months, and businesses will have another six months to put up signs indicating there is no smoking or "vaping" allowed, the report said.
Speaker Christine Quinn, who co-sponsored the legislation, said that banning tobacco cigarettes while still allowing electronic cigarettes would send a mixed message, "because many of the e-cigarettes are designed to look like cigarettes and be used just like them, they can lead to confusion or confrontation.
Some opponents of the ban said they are considering suing the city for overreaching regulations, CBS 2 reported.
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