Several weeks ago, a public health bill in Wales was erected in an effort to ban the usage of electronic cigarettes and similar devices in public. Both Liberal Democrats and Conservative members of the Welsh Assembly opposed the ban, however the Labor Party was able to extract a considerable amount of support from the Plaid Cymru members to get it passed. As should be done with all shady backdoor dealings that do not benefit the public, who will ultimately feel the brunt of such bans, this bill didn’t stand a chance. While it existed momentarily, due to the hard work and tireless diligence of vapers and vapers’ advocates, the bill was shot down on account of pressure applied in regards to a lack of evidence.
As with many situations occurring globally, in which vaping has become politicized, and politicians have gotten involved for reasons beyond the greater good of the people, this Welsh vaping ban is a prime example of manipulation. This particular bill was the work of UK Health Minister Mark Drakeford, who blatantly ignored the vast amount of research presented, favoring his own prejudiced-based opinion to pass it. As Drakeford has a longstanding history of opposition to vapor devices, claiming from his own opinion that vapor methods are the “least effective” method to be used for quitting smoking. His actions angered not only vapers in the UK, with advocates for vaping becoming vehemently outraged, numerous public health agencies reacted with similar disapproval. Despite Drakeford’s inherent sense of personal self-importance, the scientific and public health communities were clearly not accepting of it. This ban was opposed by Cancer Research UK, Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), and the Royal college of Physicians Wales, among many others.
However, victory on behalf of justice prevailed. it did not even take a full 2 weeks before counter action was implemented. Those who opposed the ban fought against it by using evidence-based research. They made a clear case to the Welsh Assembly, who then understood that they were lied to, as scientific information was knowingly withheld from them.