Scottish Government backs consultation on ban of disposable vapes


THE Scottish Government has backed a new consultation by the UK Government on plans to crack down on youth vaping.

The consultation is open to anyone, of any age, in the UK and includes proposals to restrict the bright coloured packaging of vapes and child-friendly flavours, as well as an outright ban of disposable vapes.

Set to run for eight weeks, the consultation comes after prime minister Rishi Sunak unveiled proposals to introduce a new law to stop children who turn 14 this year from ever legally being sold cigarettes.

Mr Sunak also set out the government’s concerns about the rise in vaping among children, with Westminster saying that youth vaping tripled in the last three years and one in five children having now used a vape. The UK Government said that vaping is ‘rightly’ used by adults as a tool to quit smoking, but the health advice is clear – if you don’t smoke, don’t vape and children should never vape, it added.

Other proposals in the consultation include restricting the descriptions of vapes to ensure that they aren’t targeted at children, regulating their point of sale displays in retail outlets so that they are out of sight from children, regulating product presentation, and restricting the sale of disposable vapes.

Views on the proposals are now being sought from everyone, including the public, the retail sector, clinicians and medical professionals, public health stakeholders, academic experts, employers and trade unions.

The consultation has generated ‘widespread’ support right across the four corners of the UK, with the Welsh Government, Scottish Government, and the Northern Ireland Department of Health all giving it their backing and agreeing to a joint consultation.

Scottish Government health secretary, Michael Matheson, said, “We have already committed to a tobacco-free Scotland by 2034 and we welcome the opportunity to take part in this UK-wide consultation on creating a smoke-free generation.

“Scotland has a range of world-leading tobacco control measures – we were the first country in the UK to introduce a ban on smoking in indoor public places in March 2006. As a result, smoking rates are at an all-time low. We continue to be ambitious and have more work to do to create a tobacco free Scotland, and I look forward to the refreshed tobacco action plan being published shortly.

“We will continue to work with the UK Government and other devolved administrations on joint approaches where appropriate.”

Prime minister Rishi Sunak said, “Last week I promised to create the first smoke-free generation and I am wasting no time to deliver on that promise., Our ambitious plans will reverse the worrying rise in youth vaping while protecting our children from the dangerous long-term effects of smoking as quickly as possible.”