Compliance with North Dakota’s smoke-free law among vape and tobacco specialty shops

Kelly Buettner-Schmidt, Donald Miller, Megan Orr, Katelyn Rykal, Kathleen Swanson, Missy Berry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To determine compliance with North Dakota's smoke-free law in vape shops and other tobacco specialty shops selling electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) or e-liquids. Design: In this 2019 descriptive study, shops (n = 35) were assessed for compliance with the smoke-free law by observation of indoor and outdoor areas for smoking or vaping, or evidence of such activity in prohibited areas, and the presence of required no-smoking signs. Results: Only two shops (5.7%) were fully compliant with the smoke-free law. Full compliance for indoor and outdoor environments was 8.5% and 42.8%, respectively. Vaping occurred inside five shops (14.3%), and smoking occurred outdoors within required smoke-free areas in two (5.7%) shops. Four (11.4%) and 17 (48.6%) shops complied with indoor and outdoor signage requirements, respectively. Conclusions: Overall compliance remained low, although much of the noncompliance was related to signage. Use or evidence of ENDS use occurred both indoors and outdoors where prohibited by law. Classifying ENDS as tobacco products would require tobacco licensure of shops selling ENDS and e-liquids, aiding in identification of the shops for education and enforcement efforts to ensure compliance with the law and to improve public health protection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)879-884
Number of pages6
JournalPublic Health Nursing
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2021


  • advocacy
  • air pollution
  • cross-sectional studies
  • environmental health
  • health policy
  • legislation
  • smoking
  • tobacco

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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