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News - 11 May 2003
Will Smoking Ban Add to Leisure Sectors Problems?
As if the managed pubs & clubs sector didn't have enough problems with declining sales and the uncertainty surrounding licensing reform legislation a private members bill is proposing that all bars and restaurants should become no smoking zones.
Understandably there is a mixed reaction with some, like the British Hospitality Association, claiming it will depress trade but others, like the workers union TUC, insisting that it will actually increase business as those punters who shun smoky atmospheres embrace the new opportunities to eat and dine in a healthier environment. Health Minister Alan Milburn is on record with his support for the ban. Evidence from California, where there has been a no smoking rule in any public place for some time, would also appear to support the ban and a recent survey for Sky News suggested that 85% of the public are in favour. But many in the pub and bar trade point out that a growing market is young, single women who are also the most likely to smoke.
For more information on the Government white paper on smoking in public places click on www.archive.official-documents.co.uk
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