Following her recent meeting with Union representatives of Gallagher Tobacco, Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson met with the Institute of Public Health to discuss the British government’s decision to shelve plans to standarise tobacco product plain-packaging.
Martina Anderson said:
“Having met with the Union representatives of the Gallagher’s Tobacco Company last week I thought that it was important that I also met with Health Officials to appraise them of Sinn Féin’s position on the EU Tobacco Directive (TPD).
“I assured them that as a Member of the EU Health and Public Safety Committee that I will continue to fight for increased safeguards in the sale and marketing of tobacco products.
“I share their disappointment at the British government reversing its stated intention to introduce plain-packaging for tobacco products.
”Sinn Féin plans to hold an information Seminar in the near to highlight the devastating effects of smoking on the health of the individual and the enormous cost to the public health system.
“An invitation will be extended to relevant organisation and individuals in the health sector and healthy living advocate groups.
“I welcome the results of a survey produced by Cancer Research in Britain today that 85% of women with children agree that hose under 18 should not be subject to any tobacco marketing at all. Hopefully the British government will listen to the results ofthis and other surveys and revisit the issue of plain standardised packaging and other measures included in the proposed EU Tobacco Directive.
“Smoking causes eight out of ten cases of lung cancer and it is an established fact that starting smoking at an early age greatly increases the risk of cancer. With tens of thousands of children taking up smoking every year it is incumbent on governments to prioritise ways of preventing this than to be protecting the obscene profits of their friends in this Tobacco Industry.