MPs in the UK vote in favour of a ban on smoking in cars with children

MPs in the UK has voted to make it a criminal offence to smoke in cars in England when children are passengers.

MPs in the UK have voted in favour of an amendment to the Children and Families Bill, which empowers, but does not compel, ministers to bring in a ban in England. The BBC reported that Parliament had spoken and a ban would happen, making the UK the first country to support a ban. 

Bans on smoking in cars when children are present already exist in some US states, including California, as well as in parts of Canada and Australia.

The ban was supported by a number of patient organisations based in the UK, including the British Lung Foundation.

Penny Woods, chief executive of the British Lung Foundation, said: “Having campaigned on this issue for many years, we’re absolutely delighted that MPs have backed the ban on smoking in cars carrying children. This could prove a great leap forward for the health of our nation’s children.”

More than 700 healthcare professionals, including several members of the European Respiratory Society (ERS), signed a petition in the UK supporting the ban.  

In a letter published in the British Medical Journal, the signatories urged policymakers to support the public health measure, which aims to protect the wellbeing of children now and in the future.

Read the original letter

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