Reflections on the 10th Anniversary of the introduction of the Smoke Free Law in England (Part 7) Unfinished Business
The Smoke Free Law in England came into force on 1st July 2007. Hilary Wareing; Ian Gray and Paul Hooper of iPiP’s Tobacco Control Collaborating Centre had various connections with the development and implementation of the law we have now.
These are our further reflections.
Although we have been writing about how much things have improved we have to say that we are very concerned that reductions in Public Health funding and tough choices for Local Authorities has seen significant disinvestment in Specialist Stop Smoking Services. Time will tell whether this will lead to a rise in smoking prevalence for the first time in years.
Just before the smoke free law came into force we started to see ‘shisha lounges’ appearing on our high streets.
Paul Hooper thought at the time ‘They won’t last long’. However, they have grown in number and many operators are using these premises to dodge the smokefree and other tobacco control laws – and to introduce smoking to a new generation. Ian arranged for the CIEH to issue new guidance to address this.
There were also demands for further protection for children, particularly when travelling in private cars, as they were already protected in public transport.
The TCCC carried out research to measure the amount of exposure children were being subjected to on a typical school run.
The evidence of harm was strong and the smokefree laws were amended to include provate cars when children were present.
And once again Ian was responsible for producing guidance
Although children are now protected in private vehicles other passengers are not so perhaps it is time to make all cars smoke free?
For how the TCCC works see Part 8
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