ASH Daily News for 17 June 2015



HEADLINES

  • British American Tobacco leads FTSE recovery from six-month low
  • Department of Health rules out English electronic cigarette ban
  • UKIP Chief backs smoking in pubs
  • Scotland: Police Scotland back smoking car ban
  • Wales: House fire caused by electronic cigarette charger
  • Wales: Monmouth Assembly Member calls electronic cigarette ban “plain daft”
  • Parliamentary Questions

    British American Tobacco leads FTSE recovery from six-month low

    British American Tobacco (BAT) emerged as the biggest gainer on Tuesday as the FTSE 100 recovered from a six-month low. BAT climbed 2.9 per cent to £35.11 while Imperial Tobacco took on 2.2 per cent to £32.46.

    Source: Financial Times, 16 June 2015
    Link: http://on.ft.com/1LfebdE

    Department of Health rules out English electronic cigarette ban

    The Publican’s Morning Advertiser reports that the Department of Health has confirmed to the newspaper that electronic cigarettes will not be banned in England. The news follows a decision by the Welsh Government to ban the use of the devices in enclosed public spaces.

    Source: The Publican’s Morning Advertiser, 16 June 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/1N1PXla

    UKIP Chief backs smoking in pubs

    UKIP MEP Paul Nuttal has welcomed the results of a poll showing support for designated smoking rooms in pubs.

    The poll of 2000 people, which was commissioned by pressure group Forest, showed that 57% f respondents support well-ventilated designated smoking rooms in pubs and private members’ clubs, including working men’s clubs.

    Editorial note: For information about Forest please visit the Tobacco Tactics website. Data from the 2014 Smokefree GB survey (ASH/YouGov) of 12269 adults found that 82% support smokefree legislation. Public support for smokefree legislation has steadily grown since its introduction (for more information see: ASH Factsheet: Smokefree Legislation).  

    Source: Lytham St Annes Express, 16 June 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/1IOByaB

    Scotland: Police Scotland back smoking car ban

    A senior police officer has backed proposals to ban smoking in cars when children are present, although he conceded that enforcing it would not be one of Police Scotland’s top priorities and asked policy makers to consider widening the number of authorities responsible for enforcing the proposed ban.

    Assistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins told MSPs at Holyrood yesterday: “In terms of the impact on our priority to make the road safer and reduce the number of people killed, then it won’t have a huge impact on that. We would have to prioritise what action we take to actually reduce the number of people that die on Scotland’s roads, and I dare say that smoking would not fall into that category.”

    However, Mr Higgins added: “In terms of the benefit to the health of the nation, we absolutely get it and we absolutely support it… There is no will for Police Scotland not to do this. There is perhaps opportunities to widen the number of authorities that can enforce it and thereby have a greater impact.”

    See also:
    Police smoke signals – cops can’t enforce alone, The Sun (£)
    Police have no time to arrest smoking drivers, The Times (£)

    Source: The Scotsman, 17 June 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/1Geg17a

    Wales: House fire caused by electronic cigarette charger

    Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service has warned residents to take care when charging electronic cigarettes following a house fire in Llandybie on Friday. A fire crew were called to a property after a charger overheated and set fire to a set of curtains.

    Steve Davies, Deputy Head of Community Safety urged the public to charge the devices on a non-flammable surface away from other flammable materials, not to charge them over long periods or leave them unattended, and only use the charger supplied with the device.

    Source: South Wales Guardian, 16 June 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/1fgm9pJ

    Wales: Monmouth Assembly Member calls electronic cigarette ban “plain daft”

    In an opinion piece for the South Wales Argus Monmouth AM Nick Ramsay voices concern over the ban on electronic cigarette use in enclosed public spaces in Wales. Mr Ramsey argues that under the new law vapers will be forced outside into smoking areas where they will be more likely to fall back into their old smoking habit.

    Source: South Wales Argus, 16 June 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/1fgpYvf

    Parliamentary Questions

    PQ1: Tobacco: Packaging

    Philip Davies (Shipley): To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the potential cost to the public purse of the legal challenge on the implementation of the Standardised Packaging of Tobacco Product Regulations 2015.

    Jane Ellison (The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health): The Department has given very careful and measured consideration to all legal aspects of the policy of standardised tobacco packaging and this includes the potential for legal claims and the costs associated with such claims. The Government does not disclose the legal advice it receives but having looked at the evidence considers the public health benefit of standardised packaging to justify these measures and that they are defensible in court.

    Hansard Citation: HC Deb, 16 June 2015, cW
    PQ2: Public Health Funding

    Debbie Abrahams (Oldham East and Saddleworth): To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of recently announced changes to public health funding on public health initiatives on (a) exercise, (b) obesity, (c) smoking cessation and (d) sexual health.

    Jane Ellison (The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health): We will shortly publish a consultation on how best to implement these savings in ways that minimise any impact on front-line services.

    Hansard Citation: HC Deb, 16 June 2015, cW

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