Vaping: These Colorado schools will get Juul lawsuit settlement money for education and prevention

A pair of hands holds a vaping device.
Colorado is spending some of its $31.7 million lawsuit settlement with e-cigarette manufacturer Juul Labs Inc. on vaping prevention grants for schools. (Erin Hooley/Chicago Tribune via Getty Images)

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Twenty-one Colorado school districts, seven charter schools, one cooperative education services board, and one youth residential treatment center have been awarded $11.4 million in funding over the next three years for vaping education and prevention programs.

The money comes from a $31.7 million settlement between the state of Colorado and e-cigarette manufacturer Juul Labs Inc. Colorado sued Juul in 2020, alleging that it targeted youth with deceptive marketing and played down the health risks of vaping. In settling the lawsuit, Juul did not admit any wrongdoing.

Colorado is poised to spend the bulk of the settlement money on a $20 million grant program aimed at improving children’s mental health. But the state is also giving smaller grants directly to school districts, nonprofit organizations, and government entities.

Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser announced the recipients of the smaller grants in a press release Tuesday. The school district and school recipients are:

Alamosa School District: $244,968

Atlas Preparatory School in Colorado Springs: $85,000

Aurora Public Schools: $140,267

AXL Academy in Aurora: $238,000

Bennett School District: $218,547

Center School District: $198,098

Chavez-Huerta Preparatory Academy in Pueblo: $46,940

Colorado Military Academy in Colorado Springs: $117,471

Dolores County School District: $45,681

Downtown Denver Expeditionary School in Denver: $78,000

DSST Public Schools in Denver and Aurora: $114,000

Eagle County School District: $213,353

Elizabeth School District: $130,217

Fountain-Fort Carson School District: $131,009

Gunnison Watershed School District: $74,534

Harrison School District: $253,405

Lake County School District: $87,543

Mancos School District: $54,300

Mapleton Public Schools: $36,681

Montrose County School District: $100,000

New Legacy Charter School in Aurora: $71,624

North Park School District: $187,545

Pueblo County School District 70: $127,657

San Luis Valley BOCES: $273,870

School District 49: $126,961

Sierra Grande School District: $100,985

Southern Peaks Regional Treatment Center in Cañon City: $36,181

Steamboat Springs School District: $125,635

Strasburg School District: $91,500

Summit School District: $50,000

Twelve nonprofit organizations and government entities were awarded a total of $6 million. Those recipients are:

  • 21st Judicial District Attorney’s Office, Juvenile Diversion Lighthouse Program: $224,010 for a vaping education program for youth in Mesa County, with a focus on rural communities
  • Boys & Girls Clubs in Colorado, Inc.: $855,979 for community engagement and youth substance use prevention and peer-led programs at 50 clubs across Colorado
  • Broomfield Public Health and Environment: $202,184 for nicotine replacement therapy and peer support programs to help young people quit vaping, with a focus on LGBTQ+ youth
  • Denver Department of Public Health and Environment: $541,158 for nicotine replacement therapy, community engagement, and trauma-informed counseling for youth
  • Mountain Youth: $500,000 for vaping prevention education, media campaigns, cessation programs, and youth-led initiatives in the Eagle River Valley
  • Jefferson County Public Health: $400,000 for vaping education and cessation services for youth
  • Partners of Delta, Montrose & Ouray: $297,161 for mentors who will support middle and high school students with behavioral issues through school-based programs
  • Partners for Youth: $335,487 for an initiative to connect youth in Routt County with trusted adults and engage them in positive activities to prevent substance use
  • Rocky Mountain Center for Health, Promotion and Education: $800,000 for a program that will train adults to build strong connections with youth in school, family, and community settings
  • Servicios de La Raza: $950,000 to deploy a bilingual vaping-cessation program for Latino youth
  • University of Colorado/Colorado School of Public Health UpRISE: $544,018 to expand a youth-led social justice movement for tobacco control
  • Youth Healthcare Alliance: $350,000 for a program in which school-based health centers will participate in an alternative-to-discipline initiative for youth who are caught vaping

Melanie Asmar is the bureau chief for Chalkbeat Colorado. Contact Melanie at masmar@chalkbeat.org.

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