Posted: Mon 7th Nov 2016

Landmark health bill banning smoking in playgrounds set to be introduced by Ministers in Wales today

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Monday, Nov 7th, 2016

A landmark Bill to ban smoking in school and hospital grounds and playgrounds in Wales will be introduced on Today.

It’s the Welsh Government’s second attempt at pushing the Public Health Bill through, back in March the first attempt which proposed banning the use of e-cigarettes in enclosed places failed to get the green light.

The e-cigarettes element has been removed this time around.

The Government says the Public Health Bill aims to improve the wellbeing of people in Wales, with a particular focus on promoting children and young people’s health.

The Bill includes proposals to create a mandatory licensing scheme for special procedures such as acupuncture, body piercing, electrolysis and tattooing, and prohibits the intimate piercing of anybody under the age of 16.

Further down the list of ‘radical’ plans are proposals for local authorities to publish a local public toilet strategy forcing council’s to assess the need for toilets in public area’s and how they plan to meet those needs.

Deeside has seen it’s public toilets locked off to the public or in the case of Connah’s Quay’s £100,000 ‘superloo’ completely removed due to constant issues with drug taking and discarded needles.

Flintshire Schools already operates no smoking policy on school grounds, grant funding was made available in 2015 to purchase and issue signs to schools in the county.

It also proposes to:

[miptheme_list][miptheme_listitem icon=”fa-caret-right”]Create a national register of retailers of tobacco and nicotine products, so local authorities are better able to enforce legislation and provide education and support to retailers[/miptheme_listitem] [miptheme_listitem icon=”fa-caret-right”]Prohibit tobacco and nicotine products from being handed over to under 18s, for example through a supermarket delivery service[/miptheme_listitem] [miptheme_listitem icon=”fa-caret-right”]Require public bodies in Wales to assess how their decisions will affect people’s physical and mental health[/miptheme_listitem] [miptheme_listitem icon=”fa-caret-right”]Require local authorities to produce a strategy about toilets for use by the public within their area [/miptheme_listitem] [miptheme_listitem icon=”fa-caret-right”]Make pharmacies more responsive to the needs of their local community [/miptheme_listitem] [/miptheme_list]

Minister for Social Services and Public Health, Rebecca Evans said:

“Many of the measures included in the original Public Health Bill which was introduced in 2015 had strong public, stakeholder and cross-party support, which is why there was widespread disappointment when it wasn’t passed.

“In re-introducing the Bill, we are retaining those areas which were strengthened in the previous scrutiny process – such as measures to restrict smoking in school grounds, hospital grounds and public playgrounds.

“At the heart of the Bill is the aim of promoting the health of children and young people. Proposals such as the ban on smoking in school grounds and playgrounds are intended to prevent children from being exposed to smoking behaviours, making it less likely that they’ll take up smoking themselves.

The Bill is expected to be introduced to the National Assembly today Monday 7th November with the Minister making a Legislative Statement about the Bill during Plenary in the Senedd tomorrow Tuesday 8th November.

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