ASH Daily News 1 December 2017


  • Retailers asking for rethink on tracking and tracing


  • USA: Smokers 10 times more likely to be daily marijuana users
  • USA: Plymouth city to raise tobacco age to 21

Parliamentary Activity

  • Parliamentary questions

Link of the Week

  • Should mental health services be smokefree?

Retailers asking for rethink on tracking and tracing

The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) has written to Exchequer Secretary Andrew Jones and other official at the Treasury with regard to the proposed ‘tracking and tracing’ rules due to come into force in May 2019.

The EU Tobacco Products Directive puts requirements on member states to come up with a new system for tackling illicit trade in tobacco products, though a system tracking the sale of legitimate tobacco products through the supply chain.

Under the draft regulations, retailers would have to register to receive both an ‘economic operator identifier code’ for their business and a ‘facility identifier code’ for each store. The ACS believes there is currently a lack of clarity over the fees associated with applying for these codes, along with concern over the associated costs of the proposals such as staff training.

In its letter the ACS urges the Treasury to look closely at the impact of these regulations on retailers in discussions with the EU Commission.

Source: Talking Retail, 30 November 2017
Read Article

USA: Smokers 10 times more likely to be daily marijuana users

A new study by researchers at Columbia University and City University of New York has found smokers are significantly more likely to use marijuana.

“While we found that daily cannabis use and cigarette smoking were strongly linked among all subgroups, the most striking finding in daily cannabis use was among youths aged 12 to 17 years,” said Renee Goodwin, PhD, Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, and principal investigator. “Nearly one-third of youth who smoke cigarettes reported using cannabis every day. In contrast, less than 1 percent of youth who did not use cigarettes reported daily cannabis use.”

The researchers analysed data from 725,010 individuals from aged 12 and older in the National Survey on Drug Use and Health for 2002 to 2014 to determine differences in the prevalence of daily cannabis use.

See also:
American Journal of Public Health: Trends in Daily Cannabis Use among Cigarette Smokers: United States, 2002–2014

Source: Medical Xpress, 30 November 2017
Read Article

USA: Plymouth city to raise tobacco age to 21

From July next year you will have to be 21 to buy cigarettes within Plymouth City, Massachusetts following a vote by the City Council.

The change reflects the growing national campaign, Tobacco 21 and Plymouth will join other Massachusetts cities that have already taken heed of the campaign.

Source: Lakeshore Weekly News, 30th November 2017
Read Article

Parliamentary Activity
Parliamentary questions

PQ1: Smokefree prisons
Philip Davies Conservative (Shipley)
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, whether a risk assessment was conducted by his Department on the smoking ban in prisons before the roll-out of that ban.

Sam Gyimah Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Prisons and Probation
The Government remains fully committed to making all prisons smoke free. The decision to go smoke free in every prison is only taken after careful planning and preparation and the final decision is only taken when each prison has met stringent checks to ensure that it is safe to do so and all necessary healthcare support is available to help prisoners give up smoking.
The national roll out of the Smoke Free Prisons project has been actively managed under usual project management disciplines.

Source: Hansard: HC Debate 29 November 2017

PQ2: Reductions in smoking rates
Lord Laird Cross-bench
To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are proposing to reduce the overall number of cigarettes smoked in England.

Lord O’Shaughnessy Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health
The Government continues to provide leadership and guidance on the most effective interventions, ensuring that the new legislation is implemented well and that organisations with national responsibilities are joined up and effective in achieving these ambitions. We will aim to provide access to training for all health professionals on how to help patients quit, promote links to stop smoking services across the health and care system and strive to achieve a smokefree National Health Service.

We will support local councils to identify local solutions, particularly where prevalence remains high so they can help people to quit. The Government will maintain high duty rates for tobacco products to make tobacco less affordable and will ensure that sanctions in current legislation are effective and fit for purpose. Our end goal is a smoke-free generation.

Source: Hansard: HL Deb, 27 November 2017

Link of the Week
Should mental health services be smokefree?

BBC Radio 5 Live considers the ban on smoking in inpatient mental health facilities. Mental health nurse and stop smoking specialist Mary Yates is interviewed alongside two patients from Bethlam Mental Health Hospital who give their stories around mental illness and quitting smoking.

This is followed by a debate between Professor John Britton of the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies and Barry Curtis a former inpatient.

Listen from 37 – 59 minutes.
Source: BBC Radio 5 Live, 30 November 2017


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