Happy Valentine's Day from the Department of Health
The Department of Health has released some hard hitting research
The research displays all the qualities of intellectual rigour, thorough methodology, cutting edge precision, and a no-nonsense, straight to the issue work ethic that really makes taxpayers feel they are getting a big bang for their buck
It turns out that 74% of 18-24 year olds would not kiss someone who had just smoked. Add 2%, and one finds that 76% of 18-24 year olds agree that smoking makes a person less attractive. The government department has given some timely advice to youngsters still on the prowl for that Valentine’s day snog: if you decide to smoke your advances will only have a 14% success rate. Or if one was in the mood to be dramatic, a young smoker would only pull one in seven times of trying.
Now if there is a serious message to take from these findings, surely it is as follows:
1. The tobacco control industry has admitted that plain packaging will not reduce adult smoking rates but is targeted at preventing younger people taking it up;
2. Well if 18 to 24 year olds find smoking seriously hampers their chance of dating, then so would younger teenagers (unless something miraculous happens when you turn 18). This is the greatest incentive there is of not smoking;
3. Forcing tobacco companies to sell their products in visually offensive packets would therefore be a huge overreaction;
4. Those youngsters who do decide to jeopardise their love lives by smoking are more likely to do so out of rebellion. Therefore by making tobacco even more of a “naughty thing to do” it has a higher chance of encouraging them.
In short, surely the Department of Health has bigger fish to fry, rather than relentlessly demonising consumers of a legal product?
Last year the Government held a public consultation on whether the UK should adopt standardised (or 'plain') packaging of tobacco products. Over 235,000 people signed the Hands Off Our Packs petition. In total, around 500,000 people signed petitions against plain packaging, compared with 210,000 who signed petitions in favour of the measure. The Department of Health is still reviewing the consultation responses so watch this space. If you would like to receive e-updates about our campaign please enter your details below and click the relevant boxes for Forest/Hands Off Our Packs. You can unsubscribe at any time.