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Forest criticises Scottish Government's "constant war on smokers"

Wed 20th June, 2018

Responding to the publication of the Scottish Government’s new tobacco control plan, Forest has criticised the Government’s “constant war on smokers”.  

According to a recent poll by Populus for Forest, 54 per cent of Scots think government policies to reduce smoking rates have already gone too far or far enough.  

The poll of 1,021 adults conducted between May 25 and June 5 also found that 86 per cent of adults in Scotland would allow smoking in people’s homes. 

There was also support for inmates in Scottish prisons being permitted to smoke, with two thirds (66 per cent) of respondents agreeing that prisoners should be allowed to smoke in designated smoking areas. 

Over half of all respondents (56 per cent) – and 82 per cent of frequent smokers – believe that NHS hospital trusts should be allowed to provide designated smoking areas in hospital grounds for patients, visitors and staff. 

Urging the Scottish Government to “abandon this constant war on smokers”, Forest director Simon Clark said: 

“We believe the political establishment in Scotland is out of step with the general public who support fair and reasonable restrictions on where people can smoke, not prohibition. 

“Dictating whether people can smoke in their own homes goes beyond fair and reasonable. Likewise blanket bans on smoking in prisons and hospital grounds.”  

He added, “Any further measures to tackle smoking are an obvious distraction from other more important issues facing government in Scotland.  

“The Scottish Government should listen to public opinion and abandon this constant war on the country’s one million adult smokers.”

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