By Beth Germano

BOSTON (CBS) – A Boston federal judge has denied a request for a temporary restraining order to immediately put the brakes on a four month ban on vaping products in Massachusetts.

Judge Indira Talwani said she wasn’t persuaded the ban had irreparably harmed the businesses who sell the products in the state. Five family-run businesses have filed suit along with the vaping industry.

“Who’s going to give me back all my money?” said a fuming Jeffrey Vick, owner of Vick’s Vape shop in Medford. “There no proof it’s killing people, but it’s crushing all these businesses off an assumption, it’s killing people.”

Jeffrey said his three-year-old shop is losing thousands of dollars since Gov. Baker declared a public health emergency last week. The Governor says a ban gives time to determine if new regulations on the product should be established because it’s currently unclear what is making people sick.

The plaintiff’s attorney, Craig Rourke, argued the ban is too arbitrary. “There needs to be a body of evidence saying ‘this’ is what’s causing the harmful illness.  Right now they don’t know what the ‘this’ is.”

The judge argued businesses can still sell vaping products outside Massachusetts to make revenue.

“We have no online sales. When we first opened we were told it’s illegal to open online. We never opened an online store,” said Linda Vick.

The businesses have been granted a hearing for a preliminary injunction on October 15, but they worry by then it might be too late.

“It’s not like we’re making a million dollars a year in profit to survive.  We’re making enough to live,” Linda said.

Beth Germano


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