Politics & Campaigns


The latest questions and answers about vaping and tobacco harm reduction from the Palace of Westminster

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The latest questions and answers about vaping and tobacco harm reduction from the Palace of Westminster saw Alex Cunningham MP getting vexed because the Government still hasn’t published its Tobacco Control Plan (TCP) or given adequate resources to his local quit services. Bob Blackman was also concerned about the money quit services receive. Adam Afriyie was more concerned about the enforcement of current legislation.

Stockton North’s Alex Cunningham asked the Department for Health and Social Care said: “According to Cancer Research and Action on Smoking and Health, smoking costs the NHS in Stockton £9 million a year and social care £5 million a year, and it costs some £47 million in lost productivity, unemployment and premature deaths. Assuming that one day soon we will get the Government to back a control plan, will Ministers ensure that it includes the desperately needed funding for local smoking cessation services?”

 Maria Caulfield, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, responded: “Local decisions on public health are taken by local commissioning groups and local authorities, and it is for each local area to decide how it spends the money on public health.”

Harrow East’s Bob Blackman asked the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care how much the Department has spent on campaigns to promote the cessation of smoking in 2021-22 and how much is budgeted to be spent for that purpose this financial year.

Minister for Primary Care and Public Health, Neil O'Brien told him: “Expenditure by the Department on smoking cessation promotion for the period 1 October until the end of the financial year 2021/22 was £660,000.

“Budgets for the current financial year are subject to ongoing review to enable the Department to respond to external changes and challenges. The figures reference expenditure for advertising on television, radio, national press, regional press, out of home, social and digital advertising. However, recruitment advertising, paid search and media partnerships are not included. The spend figure for the 2022/23 will be available once costs have been consolidated after the financial year has ended.”

Windsor’s Adam Afriyie asked the Secretary of State whether the Department is investigating cases of manufacturers overfilling e-cigarette devices above the 2ml e-liquid volume limit and what support the Department is offering to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and Trading Standards Authority to help remove those products from the market.

Neil O'Brien replied: “There are no plans to investigate cases of manufacturers over filling vape (e-cigarette) devices beyond the two millilitres e-liquid volume limit because this is the responsibility of local enforcement agencies. The Department continues to work with the Trading Standards Authorities to provide advice in enforcing the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016, including matters relating to the two millilitres e-liquid limit. We also work closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency regarding the vaping notification system and helping disseminate information about notified vapes to support local enforcement.”

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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