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How the UK is driving the global tobacco control industry

All roads lead to Cape Town this week – if you're a tobacco control activist, hanger-on or, dare I say it, schmoozer.

Incredibly, as Guido reports this morning, there are at least 35 delegates from the UK attending the 17th World Conference on Tobacco or Health, many of them beneficiaries of taxpayers’ money.

Naturally they include Deborah Arnott (ASH), Ailsa Rutter and Catherine Taylor (Fresh NE), plus a host of academics from Bath, Stirling, Edinburgh, York and Warwick universities which are all members of the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies (UKCTAS), a network of 13 universities (12 in the UK, one in New Zealand) that conducts research on tobacco and alcohol.

If you want to know the extent to which the UK is driving the global tobacco control industry, check the programme. These are the UK attendees who are giving presentations. There may be more:

Deborah Arnott - ASH
Anna Gilmore – University of Bath
Tim Baxter – Department of Health
Rosanna O’Connor – Public Health England
Catherine Taylor – Fresh North East
Catherine Best – University of Stirling
Ailsa Rutter – Fresh NE
Marisa de Andrade – University of Edinburgh
Danielle Mitchell – University of Stirling
Kamran Siddiqi – University of York
Allison Ford – University of Stirling
Amanda Amos – University of Edinburgh
Jamie Pearce – University of Edinburgh
Andy Rowell – University of Bath

Apparently there are going to be awards for the countries and NGOs that are doing most to combat the tobacco 'epidemic'. That should be interesting.

Also present in sunny South Africa is Linda Bauld who wears so many hats (CRUK, UKCTAS, Stirling University) it’s difficult to keep up.

There must be mornings when Linda wakes up and can’t remember what country she’s in or what issue (smoking, alcohol, obesity) she’s lecturing us about today.

Other familiar faces in Cape Town are Clive Bates, vaping advocate and former director of ASH, and Derek Yach, founder of the Foundation for a Smokefree World, although I'm not sure Yach has been invited to the party.

Given that his organisation has accepted a generous donation from PMI, I suspect not.

Other noticeable absentees are stakeholder organisations representing smokers or the tobacco and vaping industries. Plus ça change (as PMI is discovering).

The conference began, officially, this morning but good to see there's a social side too.

Tobacco control - one big happy family.

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Reader Comments (4)

Yach (and any of the Foundation's associates) has actually been banned from attending the conference and is now (hilariously) being dubbed a 'pariah'.

Nothing like creating an echo chamber at the taxpayers' expense eh?

Wednesday, March 7, 2018 at 10:29 | Unregistered CommenterPaul B

Yach's foundation is no friend of smokers either. Looks like it's out in the cold and after pushing fake stats on the scam of SHS it certainly deserves to be.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018 at 14:14 | Unregistered CommenterPat Nurse

It is certainly a sign of their hubris that they would actually give out awards based upon the effectiveness of persecution smokers (based upon the false second hand smoke threat). But, this will make the records of their conspiracy available for future scrutiny (and potential prosecution for fraud).

Wednesday, March 7, 2018 at 20:00 | Unregistered CommenterVinny Gracchus

Maybe the question should be "Why is the UK driving the global tobacco control industry?"

My, short, answer is that the modern state sponsored hate campaign conducted against smokers it is a product of cold war politics.

Saturday, March 10, 2018 at 11:17 | Unregistered CommenterFredrik Eich

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