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No legal challenge on big tobacco planned

By Mindo - 01st Mar 2018

<p class=”p1″>The issue of a possible legal challenge was <span class=”s1″>raised by ASH Ireland when its representatives met with the Minister back in December 2016, according to information on </span><span class=”s2″>www.lobbying.ie</span><span class=”s1″>.</span>

<p class=”p1″><span class=”s1″>ASH Ireland met with Minister Harris in late </span>December 2016 to discuss the possibility “of <span class=”s1″>Government suing the tobacco industry for recovery of health related costs,” according to the group’s return on the </span><span class=”s2″>www.lobbying.ie </span><span class=”s1″>register.</span>

<p class=”p1″>A Department of Health spokesperson told the <strong><em>Medical Independent </em></strong>(<strong><em>MI</em></strong>) last week: “The Minister for Health has no plans at <span class=”s1″>this time to initiate a legal challenge against the </span>tobacco industry in relation to the recovery of <span class=”s1″>health related costs.”</span>

<p class=”p1″>Recent research from the HSE shows that there has been a significant increase from 3.5 <span class=”s1″>per cent in 2003 to 24.6 per cent in 2014<span> </span>in the number of people smoking roll your own (RYO) </span>tobacco in Ireland. One-in-four smokers now use RYO according to the HSE research pub<span class=”s1″>lished last year. The HSE recently reissued its call for people </span><span class=”s1″>to quit smoking as part of National No Smoking Day (Ash Wednesday).</span>

<p class=”p1″>The HSE QUIT campaign has been in place since June 2011 “and has proven to be one of the HSE’s most comprehensive and effective social marketing campaigns, prompting over <span class=”s1″>600,000 quit attempts since 2011 and provid- ing support to many thousands of quitters,” according to the HSE.</span>

<p class=”p1″><span class=”s1″>The HSE launched an enhanced website and </span>the QUIT Team support service in January 2015, with a support team of trained advisors, available over the phone, by email, live web-<span class=”s1″>chat or via Twitter or Facebook.</span>

<p class=”p1″><span class=”s1″>Meanwhile, Minister of State for Health Pro</span>motion and Drugs Strategy Catherine Byrne has welcomed the news that tobacco products bearing the new standardised packaging are <span class=”s1″>now available in some Irish retail outlets.</span>

<p class=”p1″>From September 2018 all cigarettes and all other tobacco products will have to be sold in <span class=”s1″>plain or standardised packaging in accordance </span>with the Public Health (Standardised Packag<span class=”s1″>ing of Tobacco) Act 2015.</span>

<p class=”p1″><span class=”s1″>However, products using the new plain packaging can now be found in some outlets.</span>

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