Vape Ban in Wales Defeated in Strange Twist of Events.
Last week the Welsh Health Bill that proposed banning vaping in public and enclosed public spaces was defeated, but on unusual grounds.
The Bill had been highly criticised by many experts and health charities, but it failed when at the last minute Plaid Cymru whipped their party to vote against it. Previously there had been a free vote. The reason for the change in heart was allegedly due to a jibe aimed at Plaid Cymru, by one Labour Assembly Member who stated that a previous deal with the party was a ‘Cheap Date’.
The BBC reports that a spokeswoman for the party said Plaid felt Mr Andrews comments made about a deal over a bill on local government with Plaid were disrespectful.
Plaid had proposed after the jibe that the Bill be withdrawn and looked at again after the Welsh elections in May, but it appears a compromise was not reached.
Vapers were celebrating on social media as the bill was expected to pass. The final vote was a heat – 26-26, meaning the Assembly was tied, so the bill failed.
It is sobering though for vapers to realise that the bill was defeated possibly due to a political party throwing the equivalent of a tantrum, but nevertheless the bill has failed.
Welsh health Minister Mark Drakeford stated, “I am deeply disappointed that the Public Health (Wales) Bill will not pass onto the statute book today. It puts to waste five years of careful preparation and constructive work with a very wide range of stakeholders and supporters.”
As well as the e-cigarette measure, the bill aimed to create a compulsory licensing system for tattooists, prohibit intimate piercing of children under 16 and require councils to produce a local toilets strategy.
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