[Relevant documents: The Second Report of the Health Committee, Session 1999-2000, on The Tobacco Industry and the Health Risks of Smoking, HC 27-I, and the Government's response thereto, Cm 4905.] — 22 Jan 2001
Oliver Letwin MP, West Dorset voted in the minority (Aye).
Order for Second Reading read.
I beg to move, That the Bill be now read a Second time.
This Government came to office with a commitment to ban tobacco advertising. We repeated that commitment in our tobacco White Paper "Smoking Kills" in December 1998. For almost four years, we have fought for this policy in the European Union, in the European courts and in the British courts. Today, we are honouring the commitments that we have made. The Bill will ban tobacco advertising and sponsorship in this country. It will do so to protect public health, to safeguard children and to reduce health inequalities.
this is damning evidence that tobacco sponsorship encourages young boys to take up smoking.
the cigarette industry has been artfully maintaining that cigarette advertising has nothing to do with total sales. This is complete and utter nonsense. I am always amused by the suggestion that advertising--a function that has been shown to increase consumption of virtually every other product--somehow miraculously fails to work for tobacco products.
men aged 12 to 17--
held most appeal for teenagers, particularly 14-15 year old smokers.
the collective empirical, experiential and logical evidence makes it more likely than not that advertising and promotional activities do stimulate cigarette consumption.
a recent study of 22 high income countries based on data from 1970 to 1992 concluded that comprehensive bans on cigarette advertising and promotion can reduce smoking.
in each case the banning of advertising was followed by a fall in smoking on a scale which cannot reasonably be attributed to other factors.
My party also supports the Bill, the fact that it is UK-wide legislation, and the ban . . . should the Tories win the next general election, we will pursue the legislation.-- [Scottish Parliament Official Report, Health and Community Care Committee, 10 January 2001; c.1347.]
if it comes to a choice between public health and the tobacco industry I think public health would be a priority.
I beg to move, to leave out from "That" to the end of the Question, and to add instead thereof: "That this House declines to give a Second Reading to the Tobacco Advertising and Promotion Bill because there is insufficient evidence that its provisions would lead to a quantifiable reduction in tobacco consumption and yet they entail a serious restriction of freedom of expression; it contains no provisions to combat the increase in the prevalence of smoking amongst vulnerable population groups which is due to the growth in importation and sale of illegal tobacco products; nor does it address the difficulties of those sports which stand to lose financial support as a result of its provisions." This debate is not about whether smoking is a bad thing. It is a bad thing, as the statistics recited by the Secretary of State make clear. More than 30,000 lung cancer deaths alone are attributable to smoking, which accounts for two thirds of the difference in life expectancy between the richest and poorest people in the United Kingdom. Half of all teenagers who smoke will die from tobacco-related diseases. I do not need the statistics, because I worked as a junior doctor in a ward that specialised in respiratory diseases. I have watched people coughing up their blood supply because of their lung tumours and seen relatives suffer along with their loved ones. Closer to home, my grandfather died of lung cancer.
I have no love for the tobacco companies, but that is not the point of this debate. While our policy aim must be to secure decreased consumption and prevalence of tobacco in a sustainable way, the debate is about whether the Bill is acceptable in itself and as part of the wider policy. We must, therefore, consider past and current trends in smoking. We must also consider whether a ban is acceptable in itself, whether a ban such as that proposed would work and what other measures are needed.
The Government will publish a White Paper next year setting out measures to tackle tobacco consumption.
After considering the issue of sponsorship in great depth the Government has proposed excluding Formula One from the scope of the proposed EU Directive on tobacco advertising and sponsorship which is currently being negotiated. We have always made clear that we are pursuing twin objectives of reducing smoking and of safeguarding sport from any effects arising from the loss of tobacco sponsorship.
I am always amused by the suggestion that advertising, a function that has been shown to increase the consumption of virtually every other product, somehow miraculously fails to work for tobacco.
The balance of evidence thus supports the conclusion that advertising does have a positive effect on consumption.
In each case the banning of advertising was followed by a fall in smoking on a scale which cannot be reasonably attributed to other factors.
tobacco advertising does affect total consumption
and that bans had a "useful effect". Indeed, the right hon. Members for Henley (Mr. Heseltine) and for Suffolk, Coastal (Mr. Gummer)--both in the Cabinet at the time--even went as far as to send a memorandum arguing that a ban was "the credible way forward". Regrettably, as has been said, that approach did not win the day in the Conservative party at the time. However, at least these arguments were being advanced, and being advanced by people in a prominent position in the Cabinet.
Do you agree that smoking causes lung cancer beyond all reasonable doubt?
There is an overwhelming medical and scientific consensus that cigarette smoking causes lung cancer, heart diseases, emphysema and other serious diseases in smokers . . . smokers are far more likely to develop serious diseases, like lung cancer, than non-smokers.
Bearing in mind that asthma causes 1,400 deaths per year, we do not regard asthma attacks as merely unpleasant and believe that policy goals related to ETS
must take account of the real health risks it possesses.
would lead to a quantifiable reduction in tobacco consumption.
restriction of freedom of expression.
Smoking should not be associated with social, sexual, romantic or business success . . . advertisements should not link smoking with people who are evidently wealthy, fashionable.
Advertisements should . . . avoid employing any approach which is more likely to attract the attention or sympathy of those under the age of 18 . . . no advertisement should exaggerate the pleasure of smoking or claim that it is daring or glamorous to smoke.
boost Benson and Hedges image with style-conscious 18-24s.
we want to engage people's aspirations and fantasies
I'd like to be there, do that, own that.
young, fast, racy, adult, exciting, aspirational but attainable environments.
fast, furious, dangerous; living life to the full.
We've got the Food Standards Agency for food, the Medicines Control Agency for medicines. For tobacco we've got one man and a dog--and the dog's dead.
I give the Secretary of State a commitment that I will be open-minded about the issue.--[ Official Report , 7 December 2000; Vol. 359, c. 150.]
declines to give a Second Reading
there is insufficient evidence that its provisions would lead to a quantifiable reduction in tobacco consumption.
cannot be reasonably attributed to other factors.
The balance of evidence thus supports the view that advertising does have a positive effect on consumption.
The Government cannot continue to procrastinate on the issue of an advertising ban on the grounds that it is awaiting a level of proof about its effectiveness which is, in the nature of things, unobtainable.
The Department of Health discussion document on the effect of tobacco advertising on tobacco consumption . . . was published in October 1992 and comments were invited on it. The substantive comments have been considered. The conclusions from this review are as follows:
i. tobacco advertising does affect total tobacco consumption, not just brand share.
Further restrictions on tobacco advertising up to and including a ban could therefore be expected to reduce smoking.
ii. other countries have introduced bans which have had a useful effect in their particular circumstances;
iii. from the evidence available, it is not possible to quantify the size of the effect of a ban in this country with any degree of certainty.
I have seen Virginia Bottomley's minute to you of 5th November on the outcome of her Department's review of the effect of tobacco advertising on smoking and proposing to announce in the Government's Action Plan her intention to renegotiate the voluntary agreement on advertising.
In her minute Virginia takes the view that whilst there are arguments for and against a ban on tobacco advertising the evidence available does not justify that course of action. I find this a surprising conclusion given that the Department of Health's review suggested that further restrictions, including a ban, would reduce smoking, and thus save lives, even though the effect could not be quantified with any certainty. Further, the paper acknowledges the failure to make satisfactory progress in reducing smoking among 11-15 year olds towards the Health of the Nation target.
I recognise there is a delicate balance between those who favour a total ban on tobacco advertising and those who believe a tougher voluntary agreement with the industry is the best way forward to achieve the Government's aims in reducing smoking and therefore protecting public health.
Nevertheless, I am persuaded by the medical evidence, acknowledged in Virginia's paper, that a ban on tobacco advertising would not only further reduce smoking but would also contribute to improvements in people's health and avoid the damaging economic burdens which the consequences of ill-health place on business.
Further, there does seem to me to be an inconsistency in a policy which continues to defend tobacco advertising even in a restricted form with a policy designed to reduce smoking further through encouraging the prohibition of smoking in public, on transport or in the work place. Indeed, I would argue that if the Government really wishes to demonstrate its commitment to achieving the Health of the Nation targets and to inspire confidence in its actions on reducing smoking and illegal sales, an outright ban instead of some half-way house of severely constrained advertising is the credible way forward.
I have seen Michael Heseltine's letter to you of 16th November concerning Virginia Bottomley's minute to you on tobacco advertising, dated 5th November.
I fully support the views and arguments in Michael's letter. If the Government wants to be seen to be serious about reducing prevalence of smoking and improving people's health the right course of action would be to go for an outright ban on tobacco advertising. A ban on advertising could indirectly help the achievement of my Department's efforts to ban or restrict smoking in public places, by which we contribute to the overall policy on smoking.
I strongly support Virginia's intention to tighten further the voluntary controls on tobacco advertising and perhaps also sports sponsorship (indeed, I myself would not have opposed an outright ban if Virginia had felt able to move that far--the argument which her Paper stresses, about whether to curb the freedom to advertise a
legal product, was effectively conceded years ago when cigarette commercials were banned from just those media whose methods of advertising were thought to be most effective).
The more robust we are in our public attitude towards smoking, the more credibility we will have in pursuing our key Health of the Nation targets; in resisting the draft EC Directive on subsidiarity rather than policy grounds; and in refuting the arguments that our drive to improve public health is blunted in respect of tobacco consumption by our need for the revenue that smoking generates.
any negative effect of advertising bans on tobacco consumption. Indeed . . . they may have had the opposite effect to that intended.
there is overwhelming evidence to support the proposition that advertising bans on tobacco products do not reduce tobacco consumption.
there is no evidence in any of the studies to suggest, if advertising were banned, it would make the least difference to the propensity of children to smoke.
not know and had no reason to suspect that the purpose of the free distribution was to promote a tobacco product.
I am appalled that the tobacco companies are trying to undermine a clear manifesto commitment for which there is such widespread public support.
looked at the conflicting evidence of bans in other countries and made no estimate for the UK.
The Conservatives support the aims of the Tobacco Advertising and Promotion Bill. As a unionist, I recognise that some legislation, especially on subjects that impact on all of us in the British isles, is best dealt with in a Westminster context.
Perhaps the Scottish Parliament should decide on its own bill, which could encompass not just advertising, but point-of-sale materials, sales to those who are under age, and more enforcement.--[ Scottish Parliament Official Report , 17 January 2001; Vol. 10, c. 279-280.]
There is no evidence that advertising encourages young people to smoke who otherwise would not. It is all a matter of persuading existing smokers that one brand is preferable to another. Young people take up smoking because it is cool in a sub-culture beyond the reach of billboards or racing car logos or because they want to lose weight. Or because they want to do something of which grown ups disapprove.
A few years ago I analysed tobacco consumption in the 22 countries of the OECD over the period 1964 to 1990, in order to estimate the effect of tobacco advertising bans in the six countries which had introduced such a ban. The best estimate of the effect of total advertising bans was of an increase of about 4 per cent. The probability of the effect being a decrease in tobacco consumption was only one in 40.
The Government is committed to increasing tobacco duties on average by at least 5 per cent. a year in real terms (compared to the previous Government's 3 per cent. commitment) as one measure aimed at reducing tobacco consumption and dissuading young people from starting smoking.
First they came for the Jews. I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.
The "Task Force" was simply a gesture to give the impression we were being given assistance. In truth, there probably isn't a business out there which can replace the funding we receive from Imperial Tobacco . . . Our main concern is that we only have until 2003 to save our sport.
What would help enormously is an extension to 2006 like Formula One and snooker. We can fulfil the Government criteria of being a global sport . . .
Five and twenty ponies,
Trotting through the dark--
Brandy for the Parson,
'Baccy for the Clerk;
Laces for a lady, letters for a spy,
Watch the wall, my darling, while the Gentlemen go by!
JAN ONE: What better time to move to 1mg?
Question put, That the amendment be made:--
The House divided: Ayes 127, Noes 316.
Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.
What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.
What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.
What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.
|Party||Majority (No)||Minority (Aye)||Both||Turnout|
|Con||0||126 (+2 tell)||0||80.0%|
|Lab||287 (+2 tell)||0||0||69.3%|