Rebuff for the baccy banners

Brace yourselves for a blast of dismay from the anti-baccy mob.

Health Minister Tony Ryall today said the Government won’t be introducing legislation to ban retail tobacco displays, at least for now.

He was explaining the Government’s response to a report from the Health Select Committee which recommended new legislation to force retailers to have tobacco products stored out of sight.

Ryall noted the Select Committee’s acknowledgement that evidence could not directly link the banning of displays with decreasing smoking rates.

The Government did commend the efforts of health and other groups whose efforts have contributed to the recent declines in tobacco use.

But this is unlikely to mollify them.

Mr Ryall said

“We are committed to continuing efforts to reduce smoking rates and tobacco use, and to exploring new effective initiatives to support this.

“The Government will consider any options, including legislation, if international or domestic research gives us a compelling case that it would lead to a significant decrease in tobacco use.

“I have asked the Ministry to keep monitoring international moves in this area, and if research suggests that a ban on displays would result in a significant reduction in tobacco use, then the Government would give the issue further consideration,” Mr Ryall said.

The ban-anything-that-bugs-us brigade could have got away with this sort of thing without evidence under Labour. Not any more.

No, Alf doesn’t endorse smoking. He does endorse keeping the Govenrment’s legislative guns holstered until it can be clearly shown they are needed.

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