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Full workplace smoking ban the only sensible option - Bairbre de Brún

17 October, 2005

Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún has today welcomed the announcement by Shaun Woodward of a complete smoking ban in all enclosed public places in the Six Counties. Commenting on the ban, Ms de Brún said that it was a 'welcome boost for public health' and that 'no other decision would have made any sense'.

Speaking today the former Health Minister in the Assembly said:

"I am extremely pleased by today's decision. It now means that workplaces in the whole of Ireland will be smoke free and that can only be a positive development for the long-term health of employees and patrons.

"Support for a public ban was overwhelming, with 91% of those consulted calling for a full ban. Over this past number of months, many people were questioning the political will of the British Government to fulfill its obligations by protecting public health. In light of this, today's decision should be welcomed wholeheartedly.

"However, I am concerned that today's ban will not come into effect until April 2007. Such a delay is to the detriment of workers' health, and I would call for a re-examination of this timescale.

"This announcement is not only a welcome boost, but a massive step forward for public health." ENDS

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