Milwaukee Public Schools has voted to join a nationwide lawsuit against Juul Labs.
Keller Rohrback and MWH Law Group filed the class-action lawsuit against Juul Labs Inc., alleging that the e-cigarette company’s advertising and product design deliberately targeted minors, and that Altria Group, a part owner of Juul, knowingly supported targeting minors.
A Juul company spokesman said the company has halted advertising, eliminated flavored products other than menthol and submitted documents to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration outlining the products’ “harm reduction potential” and measures to address underage use, according to a story on milwaukeenns.com. A federal judge recently denied the company’s request to halt the class action.
Milwaukee City Attorney Tearman Spencer said the e-cigarette company has done irreparable damage to the progress the city had made in curbing tobacco use before e-cigarettes arrived.
“It took years to get to the relatively low level of youth tobacco use we had in 2017 before this, at great cost to the city,” Spencer said. “It is not fair for MPS or the city to bear the entire cost of undoing what these companies did.”
The Common Council will also vote on whether to join the suit. Spencer said he’s unsure about the timing of the lawsuit, but that if “we are super lucky,” it’ll take a couple of years.