Do bans make people smoke less? asked the Irish Times on Saturday. Rare for an Irish newspaper to discuss the smoking ban and rarer still to see comments from opponents of the ban in any Irish publication. Features a quote from John Mallon, spokesman for Forest Eireann.
The article was prompted by the recent smoking ban in Spain:
The Spanish measures, which are the country’s second attempt at a ban, are far more stringent than those introduced here in 2004, when Ireland became the first EU country to implement the policy.
Since last Sunday, smoking in Spain – the fourth largest tobacco manufacturer in the EU – is outlawed not only in places such as restaurants, bars and airports but also outside schools, hospitals and in children’s playgrounds.
The fines for breaking the ban range from €60 to €600,000. It remains to be seen whether the fuming Spaniards will flout the new laws, but both Irish experience and recent research suggest the extreme nature of the ban makes compliance even more likely.
As it happens we have in our midst an unrepentant smoker who has been working in the Spanish tourism industry for a number of years.
"I knew about the proposed ban last year," writes Peter Thurgood, "but to be perfectly honest I never thought it would really happen. I feel so let down I will never again recommend Spain as a holiday destination to anyone until they overturn it."
Peter feels so strongly he has written a 1500-word article for The Free Society. Click HERE.