I’m Stefan Didak, founder and president of Not Blowing Smoke and I’m writing this update because I have something amazing to share and write about; the birth of a 100% consumer movement in Washington State by the name of Vapers North West.
On February 7th Alex Clark (CASAA) and myself were in Salem OR to support the Vape Day at the Capitol, during which a lot of legislative movement was discussed, including those taking place in WA. On the drive back from Salem OR to Vancouver WA the spark was fired to see if there was a way to form a 100% consumer movement in the State. Steven Berry immediately went live on Facebook and called for a town hall style meeting to take place later that evening. What happened next was nothing short of stunning and I will tell you that I have not seen this before in any other State. With less than 4 hours notice, on a weekday, in the evening, approximately 60 people decided to join us for the meeting.
Obviously the vaping community in WA is a strong and cohesive one. But we have those in other places as well, yet none so determined and dedicated with passion and spirit as what I witnessed in WA. Seeing how well everyone worked together and plan for the next steps was nothing short of amazing.
Plus, on a personal note, having folks come up to me saying they are tired of doing cloud comps and would love to get more involved in advocacy efforts, really showed me that the community in WA knows what’s important when it comes to fighting for the continued accessibility of vapor products. As an advocate who has been doing this for a few years I must say I felt rejuvinated and filled with energy. It is my hope that showing the efforts (and likely positive results) of the community in WA will help spark similar feelings in other States. After all, if WA can do this, every community in every State should be able to.
During the town hall style meeting we decided that Not Blowing Smoke would be providing support for this consumer movement and without hesitation or delay, the next day after I got back home, Jason Downing (NBS) and myself started getting some social media and infrastructure in place. As well as a few other things that it’s too soon to talk about openly. The first publicly visible result is what you’re looking at right now, the Vapers North West website.
Every State deserves a strong 100% consumer driven movement because there are actions that can be taken by consumers that are hard, if not impossible, to do for business owners. And this year specifically, every State will benefit from having such a strong movement as we are all facing a metric ton of bad legislation and various kinds of prohibitions on vaping. It is time to start gearing up for the most intense battles any community has ever seen and this year there is no more time to sit back, wait things out, and hope that others will take up the effort. This year needs all of YOU involved and I’m beyond excited to see that the community in WA is doing exactly that.
If you’re a vaper in Washington State there’s a few things you should consider doing right now;
- Join CASAA if you haven’t already. It’s free and it’s of critical importance!
- Join the Vapers North West Facebook Page.
- Sign up for the Vapers North West Newsletter.