Smoking could be banned in beer gardens and beaches

Prof Sir Chris Whitty, the Chief Medical Officer for England, criticized any attempt to present the issue as a matter of “free choice” as “dishonest”.

He said: “The cigarette industry lobbyists will try to make this a health versus freedom debate. It is the most dishonest debate imaginable.

“The majority of smokers want to quit but cannot because the cigarette industry got them hooked from a young age. You can not. That’s not freedom of choice.

“Smoking leads to rapid health impairment in people around a smoker. They don’t choose to smoke, but they still suffer from it. That’s not freedom of choice.

“The baby in the womb of a smoking pregnant woman does not choose to smoke. If you are for freedom, you are absolutely not for this addictive industry that is killing so many people.”

Activists praise ‘ambitious’ report

Deborah Arnott, the executive director of Action on Smoking and Health, said the report was “ambitious,” saying polls indicated the public supported greater government intervention to combat smoking.

“Only by making smoking obsolete can the government fulfill its mission of improving health and well-being,” she said.

Michelle Mitchell, Chief Executive of Cancer Research UK, said: “Smoking is the leading cause of cancer, with it being estimated that one in four deaths from all cancers in the UK is linked to smoking. The scale of the problem is undeniable, but England remains on track to become smoke-free by 2030. And for the most disadvantaged, that won’t happen until the mid-2040s.” Smoking could be banned in beer gardens and beaches

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