The party will vote against the Bill today as its General Principles are debated in the Assembly, with strong objections to the provisions within it to restrict the use of e-cigarettes in enclosed public places. If you want to join the party's campaign against the e-cigs ban, click here to add your name.
Kirsty Williams AM has said she plans to amend the Bill to ensure it addresses “some of Wales’ biggest health concerns”. A key proposal is for Health Impact Assessments, working in a similar way to Environmental Impact Assessments to measure pieces of legislation.
Kirsty Williams AM, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, said:
“For a Bill that claims to address public health, some of Wales’ biggest health concerns – obesity, diabetes, air quality, heart disease – don’t even get a mention. Labour’s poverty of ambition for the health of our nation is shocking.
“The truth is that as it’s currently drafted, this Bill won’t improve public health. If anything, it will have exactly the opposite effect thanks to Labour’s ill-thought out vaping ban. Welsh Liberal Democrats will not support any Bill that includes this ban.
“Yet again we have another Bill that achieves very little, bearing the mark of a tired Labour Government that’s out of ideas. Welsh Lib Dems will bring fresh solutions to the most important public health issues facing our nation as we amend the Bill in the coming weeks.
“One of our key calls is for Health Impact Assessments, ensuring that every law this Assembly passes is analysed to ensure it doesn’t harm the health of the people of Wales. These Assessments could, ironically, strike down Labour’s e-cigs ban if they were in place now.
“Any AM or party who supports this Bill should know they’re not only missing a real opportunity to improve the health of our nation, they will be actively harming it.”