JCPS announced an anti-vaping campaign on Tuesday. | Photo by Darla Carter

For the second time in two days, an anti-vaping campaign has been announced, this time by the Jefferson County Public Schools.

The state’s largest school district announced its “Vaping Equals” campaign at a news conference at the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness Tuesday afternoon to warn students and families about the dangers of using electronic cigarettes.

The campaign will include placing posters in high traffic areas at middle and high schools and incorporating vaping into the health curriculum, with an emphasis on helping students understand how e-cigarettes can affect the body and how they’re sometimes targeted at youths.

JCPS students speak out against vaping Tuesday. They were part of a news conference announcing a district campaign on the dangers of electronic cigarettes. | Photo by Darla Carter

It’s time “that we raise awareness around this issue with families and parents and students” and that “all of our stakeholders understand the health risks that are in place with e-cigarettes and JUULing,” JCPS Superintendent Marty Pollio said.

Pollio was joined by Mayor Greg Fischer and other supporters, including the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, which had announced a campaign against youth vaping on Monday.

“Vaping is putting a whole new generation of teens at risk of nicotine addiction, and we all have to step up to stop it,” said Bonnie Hackbarth, the foundation’s vice president of external affairs.

Vaping has become so popular among youths in recent years that the U.S. surgeon general has branded it an “epidemic.” In fact, teens are more likely to use e-cigarettes than conventional cigarettes these days.

“This is something very recent that’s growing exponentially among our youth,” Atherton High School Principal Tom Aberli said at the news conference.

The new campaign includes a website to help familiarize students and others in the community with e-cigarettes. The campaign also is intended to stimulate family discussions on the topic.

“It is important that we address this issue with our children so that we can reduce e-cigarettes like we have done with conventional cigarettes,” Pollio said.

Darla Carter
Darla Carter is a hometown girl who recently joined the staff of Insider Louisville to mostly cover health. She previously served as a longtime health and fitness writer for The Courier-Journal, where she also worked for the Metro, Neighborhoods and Features departments. Prior to that, the award-winning journalist wrote for newspapers elsewhere in Kentucky and Tennessee, covering a range of topics, from education to courts. She's a graduate of Western Kentucky University, where she studied journalism and philosophy, and is the proud mom of two young children.