Penningtons Manches

UK 200 2014 position: 60

Should e-cigarettes be permitted at work? The case against

By Eugene Wojciechowski

Some of you may remember Grange Hill and the ‘Just Say No’ campaign that was triggered following Zammo (one of the characters in the series) becoming addicted to heroin. While I acknowledge and recognise that e-cigarettes shouldn’t fall into the same category of unlawful controlled substances that heroin does, when considering e-cigarettes being used in the workplace I repeat the words ‘Just Say No’ for the following reasons.

Supporters of e-cigarettes will tell you they are to be licensed as a medicine in the UK from 2016. However, despite this, it is recognised that there are still question marks as to the safety of certain chemicals used in e-cigarettes and the British Medical Association has said that more research is needed to establish whether or not they are safe. What this potentially means is that e-cigarettes may, in time, be found to be more dangerous than cigarettes. Until further research is undertaken, employers should not be encouraging employees to become addicted to these potential ‘death sticks’ (yes, they are addictive and contain nicotine just as ordinary cigarettes do) and we as a society should have now learnt from our previous mistakes of socially accepting smoking…

Click on the link below to read the rest of the Penningtons Manches briefing.

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