A national online “mega-raffle” run by Aussie Vape Vendors (AVV), a group of about 66 electronic cigarette businesses has been shut down by NSW authorities because it breached state laws.
The group “AVV” was raising funds for Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association (ATHRA), a registered health promotion charity established to reduce the harm from tobacco smoking in Australia.
They had amassed more than 160 prizes, including e-cigarettes and e-liquids, worth nearly $33,000 and committed to “sending every cent” raised to ATHRA.
NSW Fair Trading said the organisers – who had opened the raffle to all Australians – had breached the state’s Lotteries Act because they had not obtained a permit, exceeded the prize pool limit and offered “prohibited prizes”.
Mr Jackman, one of the main organiser, said Aussie Vape Vendors had inadvertently broken the law in its efforts to help ATHRA.
He said he was in the process of contacting and refunding all ticket holders.
“It’s a bit embarrassing that I didn’t know about the permits before doing the raffle, but now that they’ve given me all the information I need I’ll be getting the right permits and we’ll do the raffle at a later stage,” Mr Jackman said.
“The people who bought tickets are upset the raffle isn’t going ahead but a lot of them have decided to donate their ticket payments to the charity anyway which is great.”
Mr Jackman said he had been a heavy smoker for 30 years and the only thing that had helped him quit was vaping.
Although this raffle was shut down out of legal issue, we believe there will be more actions to help people know more about vaping and quit smoking in coming days. Well done AVV.