Labour's vaping motion up in smoke as council agrees to collaborate on issue - The Bromsgrove Standard

Labour's vaping motion up in smoke as council agrees to collaborate on issue

Bromsgrove Editorial 2nd Nov, 2023   0

MEMBERS of Bromsgrove District Council will work together to submit a report to the governments consultation on tackling youth vaping.

The council’s cabinet will dedicate one of its working group sessions to this issue, with a view to agreeing a formal response to the government’s consultation on ‘creating a smoke free generation and tackling youth vaping’.

An invitation is extended to all of the council members with a particular interest in tackling the problems of youth vaping across their district and the nation.

The working group was proposed by the council’s Conservative leader, Karen May after a motion put forward by Labour councillor, Esther Gray caused quite a stir in a recent meeting of the council on October 25.

Coun Gray’s motion wanted to place tighter restrictions on American style candy stores selling disposable vapes and sweets, particularly marketed towards children.

Before the meeting, Coun Gray told the Observer: “I was shocked to find out our local council was powerless to prevent such shops opening.

“By associating vaping with the allure of candy treats, shops like these create a dangerous connection in the minds of children.”

In the meeting, the Liberal Democrats felt the motion was too specific and lacked a broader stance on tackling the problems posed by disposable vapes as a whole.

However their offer of an amendment to the motion was met with disdain from Labour as Coun Harrison Rone-Clarke argued their amendment was in ‘bad faith’.

Coun Rob Hunter said: “This is an issue which fundamentally we all agree on.

“I’m deeply concerned about vapes. However, in a district with a struggling high street, we need to be careful not to demonize businesses in the pursuit of what is a very noble and legitimate aim.”

Making her case for the working group, Coun May said: “In this way we can make our views known directly to the government, and seek to influence their decisions on this issue.

“I want the right outcome, because I don’t want young people to be smoking and I want vaping to be used as a step down from smoking cigarettes.”

After withdrawing her motion at the meeting, Coun Gray thanked Coun May for finding an alternative which works towards tackling the issues of youth vaping.


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