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The smoking ban removes Civil Liberties

Comment 2nd July 2010

The smoking ban needs to be repealed. It has removed the civil liberites of smokers who are members of our society like everyone else. Not only has the smoking ban made me feel like a second class citizen despite being an active participant in society but it is putting pubs out of business (and forcing those remaining to invite in childen to make money despite objections from customers) but it makes entering and leaving buildings unpleasant for non-smokers.

Why does this matter?

Whilst i appreciate that for many people the smoking ban has made pubs a more pleasant environment, these pubs are struggling to stay afloat and could disappear altogether. Surely a better alternative would be pubs that are allowed smoking areas which are divided from the rest of the pub and are well ventilated with no smoking at the bar to protect workers. Of course if pub owners wish to keep their pubs non-smoking then that is their choice.

The smoking ban is also affecting other parts of life. As a member of staff in a school I now have to leave the school premises at break and lunchtime for a cigarette. This reduces the number of staff available in school in case of a fight or other event. It also means that it is very clear to students that their teachers are going out for a cigarette and in some cases (if late to school etc) they can see us and whilst smoking is our choice it is not the image that we would like to project to vulnerable teenagers.

Whilst offices/schools etc had smoking rooms they did not affect the health of anyone barring the adults who took the choice to smoke, as the purpose of the smoking ban was to protect people from secondhand smoke why are smokers now outside the offices puffing smoke indiscriminatley on those around them?

I can see the purpose in protecting people from smoke, secondhand smoke is dangerous to those around us particularly pregnant women. However removing smokers from smoking rooms does nothing for this purpose and not allowing pubs to provide smoking areas which are separated from the rest of the pub is leading to more businesses closing in a recession with many of them being the focal point of community in rural areas.

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