Smoking Outside Has Been BANNED In The UK

 Five councils in England have banned smoking outside pubs, cafes and restaurants with others now considering joining them as the Government tries to make the country smoke free within the next decade.

Newcastle City Council, Manchester City Council, Durham County Council, Northumberland County Council and North Tyneside Council have all banned smoking on the pavements where outdoor hospitality venues have tables.

And Oxfordshire County Council is set to follow suit under plans for the first smoke-free county, with employers expected to asked to enforce smoke-free spaces outside shops, offices and factories to help staff kick their habit.

A seventh local authority, Gateshead Council, does not have an official policy on smoking outdoors, but all the licences it grants to venues state that pavement cafes must be smoke-free, reported the Guardian.

In Oxfordshire, officials will work with the NHS and other local organisations to end smoking near hospitals, play parks and school gates. People will also be discouraged from smoking at home and in their car.

It is part of the push to make the county smoke-free by 2025 - five years ahead of the national target - in proposals in the Oxfordshire Tobacco Control Strategy discussed by the county's health improvement board last week.

But a smokers' lobby group said it was 'no business of local councils if adults choose to smoke' - and it follows a failed attempt last summer to push through an amendment in the House of Lords to make pavements smoke-free.

Newcastle City Council and Manchester City Council have banned smoking on the pavements where outdoor hospitality venues such as pubs, restaurants and cafes have tables

In Oxfordshire, the policy document says 'reducing the visibility of smoking' will make it seem more abnormal, so children are less likely to start. 

And it adds: 'By compelling smokers to remove themselves from defined areas to smoke, there is increased chance that they will consider stopping.' 

Ansaf Azhar, Oxfordshire's public health director, told the meeting: 'It is not about telling people not to smoke - it is about moving and creating an environment in which not smoking is encouraged and they are empowered to do so.' 

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