The excellent vape advocate Martin Cullip has authored a piece for the 1828 website titled “Banning disposables would be the first step towards total vape prohibition“.
I class Martin as someone I can turn to when I need help understanding the Labyrinth of vaping legislation and he is always 100% on the ball and extremely helpful.
He is also an International Fellow at the Taxpayers Protection Alliance Consumer Centre and is located in the UK.
I don’t want to delve too deeply into my own beliefs, I do not support the current party in power but I am pleased with their stance on Tobacco Harm Reduction (THR).
However the main alternative party may be shooting themselves in the foot. Sir Keir Starmer the leader of the Labour Party has pledged to consider a ban on disposable vapes.
In this article in the Daily Mirror he was asked on a BBC Radio 5 show whether the UK should follow the Australian plan and ban single use vapes. His response was…
“I haven’t seen the detail of that but now you’ve raised it I will have a look at it because I do think there’s more that we need to do.”
Also according to an article in the Guardian Newspaper the Liberal Democrats are calling for a ban on Single Use Vapes.
“Daisy Cooper said ministers seemed completely uninterested in the threat to children from vapes. The Lib Dems’ health spokesperson said: “We need tougher regulation on vapes, such as age warnings on packets, an end to toy-like advertising targeted at children, and a ban on the sale of single-use vapes and free samples. The government should be doing all it can to reduce easy access to vaping for children now.””
Disposables are such a polarising topic right now, they create a lot of waste which should be effectively recycled. However they are so simple for people to use – such as those with disabilities (I know my late Mom would have chosen Disposables), that I believe they should not be totally banned.
Scotland in particular right now are very anti-disposables – so some of the policy choices of the political parties may be based on this view to attract voters. ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) Scotland have been pretty vocal on the topic – despite their UK counterparts feeling it would be a mistake to ban disposables!
For instance an article on The Democrat website says that Sir Keir has stated he needs to win a considerable number of seats in Scotland – which of course may tie in with his stance on Disposable vapes.
Martin discusses how there are many people believing in Prohibition. There are people who want to prohibit many things in life!
However a new band which have been stirred up by negative media reports want Disposable Vapes prohibited.
He refers to the issues of waste and suggests more recycling facilities offered by retailers would help to solve this issue. Something I believe in too, especially with some kind of incentive.
I quote from the article…
“A parallel can be drawn to the car industry. When Volkswagen was found to have breached emission standards, the solution wasn’t to ban all cars, or even the particular models, but to ensure that standards were upheld. Similarly, the issue lies with the enforcement of retailers, not legitimate products produced by the vaping industry. It is disingenuous to make arguments for banning disposable vapes based on environmental concerns rather than addressing the core enforcement problem.”
He argues whether the true intentions of those wanting to ban vapes are for altruistic reasons or just masking a dislike of the vaping industry full stop. Which I feel may be quite reasonable as the media often chuck out negative positions on vaping as fact.
Echoing my belief that disposables play a useful role in smoking cessation Martin states…
“banning single use vapes would exclude whole sections of society from being able to make the switch away from cigarettes. Older people and those with accessibility issues like arthritis often find disposables much easier to use than refillables. Refillables often require disassembling and reassembling fiddly components, making them cumbersome for these groups. Homeless populations, where smoking is rife, lack access to power sources needed to charge the devices. A ban on single use vapes would create barriers to better health for some of the most disadvantaged individuals in our society.”
Talking about the goal for a Smoke free 2030 (less than 5% smoking rates in the UK by 2030) he says that the vaping industry should be embraced as this could be a measure to reach this goal…
“If the UK is serious about achieving its smoke-free goal by 2030, the vaping industry should not be stifled; it should be embraced. Encouraging smokers to try disposable vapes or other alternatives can provide a crucial stepping stone towards a permanent switch. The government’s recent refreshed approach to tackle cigarette use demonstrates that common sense thinking towards improving public health is alive. The Labour leader would do well to continue this if he is successful in his pursuit of Number