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ASH Scotland wants Commonwealth Games to be 'smoke free'

Anti-tobacco activists want next year's Commonwealth Games in Glasgow to be 'smoke free' (sic).

If I remember, Labour health spokesman Diane Abbott made a similar plea ahead of the London Olympic Games.

Instead, organisers provided designated smoking areas within the Olympic Park.

According to the Sunday Herald:

The anti-smoking charity ASH Scotland is launching a campaign for an outright ban on smoking at the Games.

Sheila Duffy, the charity’s chief executive, says sporting events have a crucial role to play in influencing positive lifestyle changes.

"This event is about celebrating people’s achievements ... and smoking works against that because it undermines health,” she said.

Forest was invited to comment and I am quoted as follows:

"Apart from the difficulty of enforcing a smoke free policy, it would be extremely petty to ban smoking in all outdoor areas.

"Instead of making everyone feel welcome, many visitors would feel unwelcome and excluded.

"The event must not be hijacked by public health campaigners who are determined to impose their views on everyone else."

For more information about ASH Scotland's taxpayer-funded Commonwealth Games campaign click here.

Update: The Scotsman has the story here, with a reference to Forest's reaction - Campaigners call for smoke-free games.

Update: Plea to stub out smoking at the Games (Daily Express)

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Reader Comments (6)

I've always believed that any sports competition's sole reason d'etre is to provide a showcase for the skills of those athletes who participate, it is not a political showcase, it is entertainment. It comes as little surprise that ASH would demand the same kind of political grandstanding that was seen in the 1936 Olympic games, so many of their policies have evolved from that era. Sport traditionally has mostly been free of 'isms and more importantly apolitical, the Commonwealth games is a great opportunity for young sportsmen and women to compete against the best in their fields, for some it will prove to be the highlight of their careers, others will go on to greater things, ASH's demands only go toward belittling the years of training and hard work preparing for these events by these athletes, it is not fair not is it right for ASH to make their efforts into a political football.

Sunday, April 21, 2013 at 10:43 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Watson

It would be a shame if athletes such as Bradley Wiggins failed to appear - didn't he have a ciggy after winning a medal at this year's Olympics?

Sunday, April 21, 2013 at 17:27 | Unregistered CommenterXopher

It is not surprising that ASH are trying to turn this sporting event into a notice board, but it did surprise me that:

"A spokeswoman for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said: “We will be entering into discussions with the Organising Committee to make the Games as smoke-free as possible.

What have the games got to do with the NHS? Why does the NHS want to have any greater involvement other than dealing with the inevitable accidents and incidents?

Out of their minds..........

Tuesday, April 23, 2013 at 0:01 | Unregistered CommenterJunican

The figures aren't in from London, but at the China Olympics the Majority of athletes were smokers.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013 at 14:52 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

John, sorry to be a party pooper but where's the evidence for this?

Tuesday, April 23, 2013 at 14:56 | Unregistered CommenterSimon

Why is it that meddling busybodies, both in and out of government, feel the need to impose their personal preferences on everyone? People are well aware of the health risks associated with tobacco, alcohol and other things; if they want to smoke, or engage in other risky behavior, leave them alone.

The public health and public expense arguments are a fraud. The real (as opposed to the fraudulent and manipulated "studies" designed to support smoking bans) scientific evidence proves second-hand smoke to be no more than a minor irritant and no danger to the general public. The cost of medical care for a smoker who dies at sixty-eight from lung cancer is no more than the cost of care for someone who lives ten years longer (and consumes another ten years of pension benefits) and dies of something else.

Thursday, April 25, 2013 at 20:45 | Unregistered CommenterBisley

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