Industry report: irresponsible scaremongering

Wednesday 12 August 1998

ASH/ Press releases/


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Press releaseEmbargoed: 00.01 12 August 1998 ASH
Action on Smoking
and Health

Industry report: irresponsible scaremongering

An American tobacco industry funded report published today, which claims that Britishjobs will be lost as a result of anti-tobacco legislation, has no substance and is merelyan irresponsible scaremongering exercise, says ASH.

The report [1] claims that businesses dependent on tobacco industry suppliers will beforced to make job cuts if anti-tobacco legislation is introduced. ASH believes the reportis faulty on several counts:

Firstly, there is no explanation of what is meant by “planned anti-tobaccolegislation” and, therefore, there appears to be little justification for the study.Secondly, the report is based on American economic analysis which does not necessarilytranslate to the UK situation. Thirdly, there is an implication in the study that localbusinesses and services such as hairdressers and video hire shops are entirely dependenton the custom provided by the employees of tobacco industry suppliers while providing noevidence to support such an assumption.

ASH spokeswoman, Amanda Sandford, said: “This is clearly an attempt by the tobaccoindustry to frighten people into thinking that huge job losses will result from tobaccocontrol measures, when there is no evidence to suggest that this is the case. While weanticipate a reduction in consumption of tobacco following the implementation of theTobacco Advertising Directive, this will be gradual and will not lead to the dramatic joblosses claimed in this study. ”

“In fact, research has shown that more jobs are likely to be created as aresult of people stopping smoking as they spend the money saved from not smoking on otherconsumer goods and services, thereby reinvesting in the local economy.” [2]



[1] Tobacco-industry related employment in the UK. Produced by Incontext Inc. Availablefrom The Policy Partnership Ltd. Tel 0171 976 5555
[2] ‘Tobacco and Jobs – the impact of reducing consumption on employment in theUK.’ Centre for Health Economics, University of York.




Contact Amanda Sandford, Communications Director (020) 7739 5902

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