Regression of smoking bans: The case of the netherlands
Regression of smoking bansThe case of the Netherlands Dr. Lies van Gennip, director STIVORO, Dutch Expert Centre on Tobacco Control
Tobacco act 1990- Public places and government buildings: smoking ban- Private sector: self-regulation“Employees have the principal right to work in a 100%smoke-free environment. No safe threshold. A smokingban (granting separately ventilated smoking rooms) isrequired.” Court decision (Breda, 25 April 2000)
Amendment to Tobacco Act 2002“Employers are required to take measures to ensure thatemployees can do their work without being exposed totobacco smoke” Tobacco Act 2002, Article 11aAll workplaces smoke-free from 1/1/2004, hospitalitysector exempted.
GideonNov 2004:BAT, Imperial Tobacco, Japan Tobacco International andGallaher started ‘Gideon’ to challenge smoke-freeGideon (Hebrew:) means"Destroyer," "Mighty warrior,“or "Feller of trees“
GideonGideon used the ‘Tobacco Industry Playbook’- Ventilation- Lobby for exemptions- Postpone ban, self-regulation- Economic loss argument- Legal challenges- Litigation- Internet campaigns- Moral arguments (freedom, nanny-state)Gonzalez & Glantz. Failure of policy regarding smoke-free bars in the Netherlands. Eur J Public Health, 2011, Dec5 [Epub ahead of print]
Tobacco control lobby2006-2010: “National Tobacco Control Program ”:Coalition of Ministry of Health, Heart Foundation, CancerSociety and Astma Foundation. Argued against economic loss argument and tried toend self-regulation period.Clean Air Netherlands (CAN): 65,000 signatures toParlement to request smoke-free hospitality sector (May2006).
New government 2007Minister of Health (Ab Klink): “Hospitality sector must be100% smoke-free a.s.a.p.”
Partial smoke-free legislationJuly 2008. Smoke-free legislation extended to all barsand restaurants, but smoking rooms allowed.However:ban in small venues not supported by most politicalparties and challenged by politicians and hospitalitysector.
Newspaper coverage smoke-free80%70%60%50%40%30%20%10%0% Nov Jun Jan Jul Mar Apr Sep Apr Mar Aug Feb May Oct Dec 2008 2009 Economy Resistance Health Nagelhout, G. E., Van den Putte, B., De Vries, H., & Willemsen, M. C. (2011). Krantenberichtgeving over het rookverbod in de horeca: Een inhoudsanalyse [Newspaper coverage about the smoking ban in the hospitality industry: A content analysis]. Tijdschrift voor Communicatiewetenschap, 39, 4-16.
New government 2010The first deed of Edith Schippers as Minister of Health isthe reversal of smoke-free legislation for small barswithout employeesDutch television documentaryrevealed contacts betweenMinister of Health and tobaccoindustry
Conclusions- Self-regulation not effective- Partial bans recipe for disaster- Smoke-free must be well implemented and strictlyenforced (from the start)- Education about harm from tobacco smoke is crucial- Prepare for the full Tobacco Industry ‘playbook’
Invitation: International SymposiumSmoke-free legislation: international researchfindings and lessons for the NetherlandsMaastricht, the Netherlands, October 10th 2012Speakers: Esteve Fernández (Spain), Ute Mons(Germany), and Geoffrey Fong (Canada)The symposium is organised in conjuction with thepublic PhD defence of Gera Nagelhout about theimpact of smoke-free legislation on smoking.More information email@example.com