Four school districts filed a lawsuit against e-cigarette company Juul on Monday, alleging that the company targeted teenagers in its marketing and caused schools to spend time and resources fighting the epidemic it launched. According to The Washington Post, Olathe Public Schools in Kansas, Three Village Central School District in New York, Francis Howell School District in Missouri, and La Conner School District in Washington say Juul purposefully made its products appealing to younger customers with easy-to-hide devices and a thin vapor that is hard to detect.
Some schools have had to purchase expensive devices to detect vapor in bathrooms and have otherwise spent time and resources to properly crack down on vaping, the suit alleges. The schools also say the product has prompted student suspensions, with Francis Howell School District experiencing four times more nicotine infractions over the last four years. “We’re tired of companies that just want to make money at children’s expense,” said La Conner School District’s superintendent Whitney Meissner. Juul has not commented publicly on the lawsuits. The suit comes after New York state announced that a 17-year-old boy died last week of a vaping-related illness, marking the first teenage fatality nationwide.