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Poll: Majority of adults in Scotland would allow smoking rooms in pubs and clubs

Sun 20th March, 2016

Over half of adults living in Scotland think pubs and private members’ clubs, including working men’s clubs, should be allowed to provide a well-ventilated designated smoking room to accommodate smokers.

A Populus survey of more than 1,000 adults living in Scotland found that 54 per cent of the public would allow smoking rooms, with two fifths (40 per cent) opposed to the idea.

Women (54 per cent) were equally as likely as men (55 per cent) to think pubs and clubs should be allowed to provide a smoking room.

41 per cent of women thought smoking rooms should not be allowed in pubs and clubs, compared to 38 per cent of men.

The poll was conducted last week ahead of the tenth anniversary of the smoking ban on 26th March.

Simon Clark, director of the smokers’ group Forest that commissioned the poll, said:

"Politicians like to claim the smoking ban has been a huge popular success. This poll suggests they are out of touch with many ordinary people.

"While most people understandably prefer to work and socialise in a smoke free environment, a majority of adults in Scotland seem willing to compromise, unlike our elected representatives.

"Designated smoking rooms offer a third way. Those who don't want to be exposed to tobacco smoke would continue to be protected but it would give adults who choose to smoke somewhere to light up indoors, in comfort.

"No pub or club would be compelled to provide a smoking room. The owner or club members would choose.

"The fact that so many people support designated smoking rooms, ten years after the smoking ban was introduced, shows that this issue will not go away.

"Tobacco is a legal product. One million adults in Scotland smoke. Between them they contribute over £2 billion a year in tobacco tax, a sum that far outweighs the alleged cost of treating smoking related diseases.

"In light of this survey, designated smoking rooms should be considered as a serious policy option by every party in Scotland ahead of the May election."

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