July 23rd, 2015
Tasmanian smokers to be offered choice: quit or die!
Tasmania consults on better protections for cigarettes and new ways to promote cancer… Okay, that’s not quite how they put it.
But they have been consulting on further turns of the prohibitionist screw on e-cigarettes. I have collaborated with the excellent folk at the New Nicotine Alliance UK (NNA) to respond to the consultation – our attempt at solidarity across the hemispheres with benighted vapers and the potential vapers denied choices for no reason.
Consultation information: Consultation page / Discussion paper.
Response by NNA and Counterfactual: Response (PDF) / Response (MS Word download)
>> read the full post
July 11th, 2015
“work with them, listen to them, encourage them, and respect them”
In this guest blog, Louise Ross – a pioneer of applied tobacco harm reduction – asks what it means to run e-cig friendly support services for smokers. >> read the full post
July 3rd, 2015
World’s most dynamic city should choose: innovation or prohibition?
Another day another prohibitionist move against e-cigarettes – this time in Hong Kong. I would like someone, just one person somewhere in the world (but if possible someone at WHO), to explain why it is good policy to ban a product that nobody disputes is many times lower risk than cigarettes while cigarettes remain freely available. How can it be ethical to say to a smoker: “you know those cigarettes? They’re gonna kill you” and then say “sorry we’re going to ban these alternatives that will cause you a fraction the harm, if any“. Really? So it is with heavy hearts, Gerry Stimson and I write to the Hong Kong Legislative Council Panel on Health Services to argue against the Department of Health’s irresponsible proposal to ban sale of e-cigarettes. There’s a hearing coming up on 6 July 2015. Here’s the relevant documents: >> read the full post
July 2nd, 2015
The letter the minister should write, not one she did….
If I was England’s Minister for Public Health, this is the letter I would write today, just as the proposed UK implementation of the EU Tobacco Product Directive is announced for consultation. The EU directive may be an anti-scientific, unprincipled and unlawful mess, but there is still plenty that can be done in the UK or England. One thing would be to have all the agencies involved in delivering tobacco harm reduction / e-cigarette policy aligned and maximising the opportunity. This is the letter that would do that: >> read the full post
July 2nd, 2015
Who is right about e-cigarettes?
It is not often that Ministers and senior officials take such different public positions on important policy matters, but on tobacco harm reduction and e-cigarettes, English health ministers and Chief Medical Officer for England take a quite different view. The CMO is given a measure of independence and can speak out as they please, but this is on the tacit understanding that the CMO provides dispassionate, scientifically reasoned advice in areas in which they are qualified to advise – to speak truth to power if you like. But what if the CMO isn’t providing scientifically grounded advice? Let’s examine their respective positions… >> read the full post