If the story about Ray Yeates, the vaper refused oxygen because he vapes is shocking enough, his treatment prior to this could be classed as even worse.

I’ve been contacted by Jackie Awrey, a friend and fellow director alongside Ray at the Tobacco Harm Reduction Association of Canada.

vaper refused oxygen ray yeates healthier times
Vape advocate Ray Yeates – healthier times

And she wants the world to know just how desperate Ray’s current plight is, and how he got to the awful life threatening position he’s in.

The timeline of events leading up to the current threat of ‘forcibly’ removing Ray’s oxygen supply, shows just how dangerously ignorant, the local health service is, deciding wrongly that before he could be considered for sheltered housing, he needed to be:

…cleaned up…

From that you might think Ray is a ‘drug addict’.

Far from it, the ‘drug’ Nova Scotia’s Continuing Care programme is referring to is…wait for it…CBD oil…


Ray has used perfectly legal CBD for a number of years to ease his lung condition.

OK let’s roll back a little and get the timeline of events that has led us to this life or death situation.

Vaper Refused Oxygen – Timeline Of Events

In late April of this year, Ray was desperately trying to sort out an assisted living home for himself and common-law-wife Ruthie, who has dementia.

He approached a worker at the Continuing Care government service for assistance and 24 hours later with their help, all looked good and the placement was pretty much promised.

save ray yeates thra

However, on May 7th and just 3 days before they had to leave the home that he’d sold, he was informed he would not be welcome at the sheltered accommodation because he was a vaper and needed to use an oxygen concentration machine.

Continuing Care stated it that having a vape device within the room was against policy and constituted a risk of explosion. Which means any smoker or vaper will not be allowed to stay if they are in need of oxygen.

Despite Ray pointing out there was no open flame – the absurdity of the reason – and the fact he’d safely vaped away from his oxygen supply for a long time, he was still refused.

This left him scrambling around to find a home given his was about to be sold – his wife was moved into hospital where she now resides.

You can only begin to imagine how hard it’s been for Ray to find somewhere to stay in the middle of a global pandemic and his hotel room – which he moved into on May 10th – is costing him the bulk of his pension and retirement supplements – and it is only a temporary measure

Vaper Refused Oxygen – Accused Of Being A Drug Addict!

Ray’s son is in the Navy and on hearing about his dad’s plight got in touch with the Nova Scotia Continuing Care department.

He obviously wanted to know what the hell was going on and at this point wasn’t told anything about vaping being the reason.

vape advocate ray yeates in action
Ray Yeates advocating for vaping to the Nova Scotia Government

Instead the worker he spoke too said it was because Ray had refused to go to hospital to be ‘cleaned up…

It looks like they wanted to treat Ray as if he was a drug addict and get him ‘clean’ before he could be considered for a sheltered dwelling.

Remember the only ‘drug’ Ray uses is CBD oil – perfectly legal in Canada!

Unfortunately Ray’s son was called to active service and it’s unclear if he has got to the bottom of things in the past few days.

Threat To Forcibly Remove His Oxygen Supply

Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse, on May 11th, Ray was contacted by the Nova Scotia Continuing Care services.

It informed him that due to a new policy that says anyone who smokes or vapes will be denied government assisted oxygen programs – his supply would be removed and he would have to pay for his own privately.

Add the cost of his hotel room rent to buying his own supply of oxygen, and you can see not only is Ray facing death – he’s in dire straits financially.

thra save ray yeates

It appears they feel that given Ray is living in a hotel room, there’s a serious health and safety issue.

Given Ray has been vaping and using oxygen for quite sometime – he is of course fully aware of potential dangers and has gone to great lengths to remain safe.

Jackie told me:

On May 7th, which was 3 days prior to when Ray had to move out of his home, as it was sold and the closing date was May 11th.

On May 7th 2020 is when he was informed in the “11th hour” that he was NOT accepted at the assisted living facility as he was a “smoker, a vaper,” he pressed them stating vaping was not smoking, there was no open flame, in her opinion the Oxygen Concentration machine would “explode” and cause a fire just due to a vape device being in the room.

They are vastly uneducated on this matter.

They are also, equating the vaper with the smoker.

This resulted in Ray having to scramble at the last minute to arrange living quarters.

Nova Scotia Continuing Care would not help Ray find alternative living arrangements.

Keep in mind also, we are dealing with the nation wide pandemic.

Making finding alternative living arrangements, all that more impossible.

He found a hotel in Bridgewater (his home town) that was willing to offer him a reduced monthly payment of $750 a month to have a room.

This reduced rate is due in part to hotels etc, having high vacancy due to the COVID19 virus.

Ray receives approximately $1,250 a month retirement supplements.

The more you read about what’s happening to Ray, the more angry you get.

Privately Jackie was a little more revealing and is terribly upset and angry about Ray’s awful situation.

Indeed she agrees with International Network of Nicotine Consumer Organisations [INNCO] that this is nothing short of ‘state sponsored murder‘ – it was that organization that originally brought Ray’s plight to the public.


Jackie is desperately urging all vapers and vape advocacy organizations to follow her on Twitter and continue to retweet and spread this story in order to embarrass the Nova Scotia Government in the hope they’ll reconsider.

Follow Jackie: VapinSquirrel for the very latest info and continue to use the hashtag #SaveRayYeates – a simple retweet or link on social media could save a man’s life.

Follow Ray Yeates on Twitter.

What do you make of this situation where a vaper is refused oxygen because he vapes?

Let me know in the comments below – and please don’t forget to follow the story on Twitter and other social media – we need to get this story out there.

Neil Humber
I began vaping in 2012 and found it easy to give up a 40 per day roll-up habit! DTL: Lost Vape DNA75C BF - Dead Rabbit SQ - MTL: JacVapour Sandstorm DNA 75 + Augvape Merlin Nano RTA...Daily set-up Lost Vape DNA 250c and Geekvape Zeus X I'm a former journalist and now a writer and author.. I'm an Army veteran - adore dogs and never happier than with a good book on a beach.


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