Assembly Members vote against E-cigs law.
A radical bill which would have seen ‘vaping’ banned in some public places has been defeated in the Senedd this evening.
The Public Health (Wales) Bill was defeated in a final vote by Assembly Members on the proposed law which was tied 26 votes for and 26 against.
The Presiding Officer Rosemary Butler AM had the casting vote and sided with those against the introduction of the new laws.
The bill was expected by many to be passed however it was rejected after a row between Labour and Plaid Cymru.
Plaid voted against the bill in a last-minute move, leaving the assembly tied 26-26.
Health and Social Services Minister Mark Drakeford said:
“I am deeply disappointed that the Public Health (Wales) Bill will not pass onto the statute book today. It puts to waste five years of careful preparation and constructive work with a very wide range of stakeholders and supporters.
“There will be widespread anger that opposition parties, who had exerted a real influence on the Bill, failed to support it into law and abandoned all the important protections for the public it would have put in place, preventing a range of public health harms. They chose not to do so and they must answer for their conduct.
“It would have introduced important new measures to improve the provision of pharmacy services across Wales and the provision of public toilets for the young and old; it would have introduced a ban on intimate piercing for children under 16 and new outdoor smoke-free places in hospital grounds, children’s playgrounds and schools.
“Today was also an opportunity to protect a generation who have grown up in a smoke free environment from re-normalising smoking.”