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Written Statement - Smoke-free private vehicles carrying children under 18

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This report describes changes in children’s exposure to smoking in cars between 2008 and 2014.
Children are particularly vulnerable to the effects of second hand smoke, which is associated with a multitude of child health problems.
Rt. Hon Carwyn Jones, First Minister of Wales and Mark Drakeford, Minister for Health and Social Services
We have considered new research findings on the prevalence of smoking in cars when children are present.

Although the situation has improved over the last two years, the research findings show a sizeable minority of young people are still being exposed to second-hand tobacco smoke in cars.  A link to the research findings is included.
 
We believe prohibiting smoking in private vehicles carrying children under 18 has the potential to protect them from the harms associated with passive smoking. This can lead to a host of chronic diseases, which are very largely avoidable.

Legislation would seem to be the most appropriate way forward to eliminate this harm and close the persistent inequalities gap in exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke. We are minded to move in this direction, using specific powers that were inserted into the Health Act 2006 for this purpose, by the Children’s and Families Act 2014.  A consultation on the detail of our proposals will be launched shortly, in line with established procedures.