A new public health campaign is creating controversy in California, where advertisements condemning vaping and labeling e-cigarette users as “stupid sheep” will appear on buses, bus shelters and on social media.
The city of Pasadena recently unveiled the new ad campaign, which features imagery of vapers appearing as sheep-human hybrids with messaging that reads: Don’t follow the herd. Vaping effects are unknown, stupid sheep.
The campaign received its funding from a three-year $1.5 million grant provided by the Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) Program at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), according to ECigIntelligence, an independent resource focused on tracking regulatory change for the e-cigarette industry.
The ads were created with the help of The Pastilla Institute, a marketing and branding agency. Local organizations like the Pasadena Tobacco Prevention Coalition and Neighbors Acting Together Helping All (NATHA) also contributed to shaping the campaign’s message, according to the Pasadena health department.
The campaign aims to shift attitudes about e-cigarettes and other tobacco products by discouraging their use among teens as well as Pasadena’s minority communities, where the use of conventional cigarettes and vapor products is high, according to Dr. Ying-Ying Goh, the city health officer.
Gregory Conley, president of the American Vaping Association (AVA), issued a response to the ads on Twitter calling them “reckless” and “wasteful” and suggesting that the city’s campaign against vaping is an irresponsible use of taxpayer money.
To read more, click here for the ECigIntelligence article.