WARNING: Hard content
The family of the young mum who was filmed forcing her 11-month-old baby boy to inhale a vape have spoken out, calling the act “putrid”.
The distressing video shows a mother from Kempsey on the NSW North Coast watching and smiling as the baby’s aunt places the vape in the baby’s mouth.
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WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: The family of an 11-month-old baby who was forced to inhale vaping speak out.
In the background, other people – believed to be family – are seen laughing as the baby coughs and exhales smoke.
“Want to try?” a woman can be heard saying in the video.
A family member who spoke anonymously to 7NEWS condemned his relative’s actions.
“It’s honestly putrid, like I won’t say it’s not because it is,” she said. “I removed my nephew from this situation.”
Another family member said the video “made me sick” but the young mum was “doing her best”.
“It was just a stupid mistake she made with a group of friends,” she said.
She also said a number of death threats had been made against the family.
“There is no need for violence.”
NSW Police told 7NEWS officers attended the baby’s home on Wednesday following a “report of concern for well-being”, but he and his mother had already been on the motorway.
It appears no further action will be taken as police have said they will not press charges.
“Police have now spoken with the child’s family and – following advice from medical professionals and other government agencies – no further police action will be taken,” NSW Police said in a statement. .
NSW Opposition Leader Chris Minns has indicated he is open to implementing tougher laws in the wake of the incident.
“Obviously (these are) very disturbing images,” he said.
“We will consider legislative changes if necessary. It’s odious and it shouldn’t happen.
Outrage on social networks
The video caused outrage online after it was posted on social media earlier in the week, attracting hundreds of comments.
“Who gives her child a vape, grows up and be a better mother,” one person commented.
“How can you put the vape in your own son’s mouth and watch him suck it and laugh while he chokes and coughs.”
Frustrated viewers added that they were “disgusted” by the family’s actions.
“It’s terrible, not everyone can believe it. Why would you give a young baby a vape? a local told 7NEWS.
“Disgusting…I can’t believe it,” said another.
But experts say not only is the child in the video at risk, but other children may be exposed if this type of behavior is normalized.
“It’s incredibly alarming to see this video of this poor child,” Paige Preston of the Lung Foundation told 7NEWS.
“This is a major concern because it normalizes vaping, it sheds light on something that is incredibly dangerous for children and adults alike.”
She added that evidence shows that e-cigarette use and vaping can lead to lung damage, both short and long term.
Comments posted with the video suggest the infant was taken to hospital.
However, it is unclear whether he is suffering from symptoms or was just under observation.
Experts suggest parents seek medical advice, such as from the poison control hotline or emergency room, if you suspect a child has ingested smoke from a vape.
7NEWS concealed the identity of the baby and the mother for legal reasons.
– With reporting by Evan Batten
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