Wednesday 22 April 2009

New pub smoking room petition launched on Number 10 Downing Street website

West Midlands MEP Mike Nattrass and fellow representatives of UKIP have placed a petition on the Number 10 Downing Street website calling for designated smoking rooms to be reintroduced in British pubs.

Mr Nattrass is spearheading a concerted campaign for separate, ventilated and unstaffed smoking rooms to be allowed in public houses and a petition has now been placed on the Downing Street website to intensify the campaign further.

The UKIP MEP, who is a non-smoker himself, is writing to every pub in the West Midlands about his campaign and is also urging people to add their names to a petition at calling for smoking rooms in pubs. Now people are being encouraged to support efforts for time to be finally called on the smoking rooms ban by adding their names to a petition on the Number 10 Downing Street website.

The petition can be found at “The smoking ban really has hit the pub industry very hard,” said Mr Nattrass.

“Publicans should have the freedom to decide their own smoking policies and not be told what to do by the European Union.”The smoking ban followed the EU’s Council recommendation 2003/54 calling on all EU member states to “implement legislation providing suitable protection from the effects of passive smoking at working places.”
Mr Nattrass continued: “The smoking ban has been an unmitigated disaster. Many pubs have had to shut up and down the country – in turn resulting in the loss of jobs.

“It is scandalous. Pubs are so important to local communities. All I am calling for is common sense. There should be unstaffed, separate and ventilated smoking rooms in British pubs.“Support my petition and campaign and help put the pub industry back on its feet.”

People can add their weight to the campaign by writing to Pub Smoking Room Petition, PO Box 33333, Birmingham, B6 9AE. All those emailing or writing in support of the campaign MUST include their names, full address and reasons for why they are supporting the campaign.

While UKIP does not like prohibitions and bans in general, UKIP does recognise that the smoking ban has been popular among certain groups, such as families and those wishing to eat out in pubs. However, UKIP believes that a more common sense solution is needed.

UKIP states the smoking ban should be amended to allow pub landlords - freehold, tenanted/leased and managed - and club managers to provide contained and ventilated 'smoking rooms' within pubs and clubs, where customers desire it.