ASH Daily News for 06 March 2017



  • Tax us more, world’s biggest cigarette maker tells Chancellor
  • Wales: Tobacco withdrawal linked to prison disturbances
  • New proposals against illicit tobacco will affect landlords
  • Canada: As more hotels ban smoking, peer-to-peer rentals may draw smokers
  • Australia: Government took no action against Imperial for breach of plain packs law
  • The cost of a polluted environment: 1.7 million child deaths a year, says WHO

Tax us more, world’s biggest cigarette maker tells Chancellor

The world’s biggest tobacco company has for the first time asked to be taxed more by Chancellor Philip Hammond – to encourage smokers to switch to healther alternatives.

Philip Morris, which makes brands such as Marlboro, said it backed an increase in taxes on its cigarettes as part of its bid to move to a “smoke-free future”.

In a Budget submission sent this week to Philip Hammond, the Chancellor, Philip Morris said “we support proportionate tax increases”.

See also:
A minimum excise tax on cigarettes will hurt lower earners and fuel the black market, BAT says, City AM

Source: The Telegraph – 03 March 2017
Read Article


Wales: Tobacco withdrawal linked to prison disturbances

A report by the Independent Monitoring Board suggests that tobacco withdrawal amongst inmates could account for a series of incidents in Cardiff prison.

The report says: “There is no proof of a direct link with the ban. But the indirect consequences of the increase in ­offences such as damage to property, assaults, possession of unauthorised articles and disobeying lawful orders could be due to stress resulting from tobacco withdrawal.”

“Some prisoners have a long history of smoking and their ­attempts to continue in the face of the ban lead to further numbers of disciplinary offences.”

However, the report notes that there is “no firm data as to whether or not it has contributed to subsequent disruptive behaviour.”

See also:
Annual report of HMP Cardiff, 2015-16, Independent Monitoring Board
Prisoners are ‘cooking nicotine tea’ after they were banned from smoking at Cardiff Prison, Wales Online

Source: Daily Mirror – 05 March 2016
Read Article


New proposals against illicit tobacco will affect landlords

Landlords could potentially find themselves hit with new lease requirements, periodic checking obligations and even financial penalties following the publication of the ‘Sanctions to tackle tobacco duty evasion and other excise duty evasion’ consultation document by HM Revenue & Customs.

Whilst many leases prohibit a tenant from using the property for any illegal, immoral or improper purpose, HMRC are proposing to write to landlord associations to request that they voluntarily add a clause to their standard lease agreements prohibiting illicit tobacco or excise trading.

Source: Lexology – 03 March 2017
Read Article


Canada: As more hotels ban smoking, peer-to-peer rentals may draw smokers

People using peer-to-peer services like Airbnb, which link potential guests to hosts offering space in their homes, can find plenty of smoking-friendly lodging, according to a recent Canadian study.

In Canada and the U.S., many major hotel chains have banned smoking, and several states prohibit smoking in all hotels.

“Hotels have increasingly gone smoke-free over the last 10 years. This is good for the staff who work in hotels and for guests,” said lead author Ryan Kennedy, an associate professor at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.

When it comes to regulating peer-to-peer accommodation services, the public health concern of smoke exposure should be a consideration, he and his colleagues write in the journal Tobacco Control.

Nonsmokers who use these services “should always ask if smoking is prohibited, how smoking bans are monitored and enforced, how long smoking has been prohibited, and where smokers are allowed to smoke,” said Georg Matt, a professor of psychology at San Diego State University who studies smoking restrictions but wasn’t involved in Kennedy’s research.

Source: Reuters – 03 March 2017
Read Article


Australia: Government took no action against Imperial for breach of plain packs law

The Federal Health Department has conceded it will not be taking any action against Imperial Tobacco for breaching Australia’s plain packaging legislation.

While court action which could see penalties worth more than a million dollars imposed on the tobacco giant is available, the Department has instead chosen to take what it calls a “conciliatory” approach.

In July last year journalists revealed that Imperial Tobacco was selling packets of 20 Peter Stuyvesant cigarettes with a lift out soft pack inside the olive boxes mandated by the Rudd/Gillard Government in 2011.

Imperial said at the time packaging was intended to ensure the cigarettes were “fresh” – not a deliberate attempt to enable purchasers to carry around a more aesthetically pleasing pack of cigarettes.

Last year Imperial Tobacco was inserting soft packs inside its packets of Peter Stuyvesant cigarettes to get around the Federal Government’s plain packaging legislation.

In July it appeared the Department was not aware Imperial Tobacco had been breaching the Act.

The Department has now revealed it knew what the tobacco company was doing for six months but imposed no fines and took no court action.

Source: Balonne Beacon – 06 March 2017
Read Article


The cost of a polluted environment: 1.7 million child deaths a year, says WHO

Harmful exposures can start in the mother’s womb and increase the risk of premature birth. Additionally, when infants and pre-schoolers are exposed to indoor and outdoor air pollution and second-hand smoke they have an increased risk of pneumonia in childhood, and a lifelong increased risk of chronic respiratory diseases, such as asthma. Exposure to air pollution may also increase their lifelong risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer.

In households without access to basic services, such as safe water and sanitation, or that are smoky due to the use of unclean fuels, such as coal or dung for cooking and heating, children are at an increased risk of diarrhoea and pneumonia.

Source: Newsy UK – 06 March 2017
Read Article