The aim of the proposal is to “protect young people from the influence of visible smoking and second-hand smoke”. This in itself excludes vaping, but not that this would prevent officious politicians from overextending themselves.
As it stands, vaping is included in the current proposal. Every vaper knows that using an ecig is an advert not to smoke – it’s hardly a gateway in to tobacco use. The council said in a statement: “The proposed voluntary zone would initially run as a pilot for six months and cover the main pedestrianised areas in the town centre, including around Bexleyheath Clock Tower”.
Peter Craske is the councillor responsible for Community Safety, Environment and Leisure. He explained: “We want to hear from people who shop, work or visit Bexleyheath on their views on whether we should have a smoke-free zone in the town centre.”
Bexley’s Director of Public Health, Anjan Ghosh, added: “Research has shown that even pre-school children who live with a smoker perceive that smoking is the norm. By urging people not to smoke in a busy public area that is frequented by school children, Bexley will support the government’s Tobacco Control Plan for a future smoke-free generation.”
The council has implemented a consultation period, and both Bexley and non-Bexley residents can contribute. The survey will run from now to Friday March 16th. It only takes a short while to complete. The survey can be completed by residents and anybody who might happen to visit Bexleyheath.
If you have a social media account or are a member of a group, encourage other vapers to visit the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/smokefreezone.