A few words from one of our members who received corrospondence from his/our nemesis, namely ASH (Action on Smoking and Health.)
The email comes after he has a few things to say about the dirty tricks this fake charity are involved in to add further misery to businesses selling a LEGAL product. Read on:
Today I received this from the Reichsministry of Propaganda at ASH, usually it would go straight into the bin. WE the public are presiding over the destruction of the public house, 50 a week closing, 100,000 on the dole unable to provide adequately for their families.
Now ASH want us to preside over the destruction of the corner shop!
How many of us have at one time or another been thankful that the owners of these small businesses have stayed open, often late, and on public holidays to provide a vital service, it is not just cigarettes they supply, they supply the vital staples of daily life, food, beverages, almost everything we need for our daily lives.
I will not regale you with meaningless statements about whether cigarettes are healthy or not, this is not the issue, the issue is the lives of real people trying to earn a living, the loss of revenue from taxation of these businesses will add to your personal taxation just as the closure of the pubs does, some of you have friends or relatives who work in the retail business, do you want to see them suffer as the pub landlords and their staff are suffering?
If a corner shop closes because cigarettes are put out of sight we all suffer, the owner loses their livelihood, they become unable to provide for their children, do you want to cause that?
The Customer suffers, you will have to travel to a supermarket to get your basics, tell me is it cheaper to walk to the corner shop or drive, perhaps many miles to a supermarket for two or three items adding to the financial burden of daily life
If they do hide cigarettes what will they want to hide next, sweets that cause obesity and tooth decay? Alcohol perhaps? Where does it stop?
Sweets like cigarettes are claimed to be a health hazard, causing obesity, tooth decay and gum disease which also costs the NHS a significant sum each year, they too come in brightly coloured packaging and are placed in front of the counter at the eye level of children. Should we also consider the banning of these displays too as they share so much in common with cigarette gantries and allegedly pose a bigger health issue?
Cigarettes are placed behind the counter generally above eye level and partially blocked from view by the counter, unless they are looking straight ahead or ahead and up most children will see the sweets before they see the cigarette gantry! Most kids would have more interest in the confectionary anyway.
ASH and I agree on one thing, yes you should write to your MP, but not to hide legitimate products that will lead to closures, but to save small businesses that provide you, their customers, with a valuable service which if lost are irreplaceable.
I cannot and will not decide this issue for you as ASH do, I will leave it to you to decide, to your conscience, in the belief that the majority of British citizens will halt and then reverse the terrible tragedy that unfolds before us.
This is what ASH have to say in their email to me:
Write to your MP today – Put tobacco out of sight and out of reach!
MPs will be voting early next month on measures which could change society’s relationship to tobacco. They will be voting to put an end to the advertising of tobacco in shops and to end the sale of tobacco through vending machines.
Write to them today to show your support and help to put tobacco out of sight and out of reach of children. You can find your MPs email address here http://www.writetothem.com/ don’t forget to include your address and postcode even if you don't want to hear back from them.
Three reasons why displays of tobacco should be banned:
1. Displays are advertising – since the ban on other many other forms of advertising, tobacco companies have really stepped up their game, increasing the size of displays, the number of their brands you can see and using attractive lighting and colours. They do this because it works to attract our attention and promote their brands.
2. Displays appeal to children – evidence from across the world shows that displays of tobacco in shops increases the appeal of tobacco for children.
3. Ending displays reduces the number of people who smoke – this doesn’t happen overnight but as children grow up without being exposed to tobacco marketing they are less likely to take up smoking. This is supported by the evidence in the UK and in other countries following bans on advertising and by evidence from Canada and Iceland where they have already banned the display of tobacco. It is also supported by evidence from Australia which shows that 28% of smokers trying to quit believe that getting rid of point of sale displays would make it easier.
Three reasons why tobacco should no longer be sold from vending machines:
1. Children are regularly buying tobacco from vending machines – 17% of teens who smoke cite vending machines as a regular source of tobacco.
2. Children are rarely challenged when buying from vending machines – Test purchasing by local councils using underage volunteers across the country found that children could buy tobacco from a majority of vending machines
3. No other age restricted products , including alcohol, knives, fireworks or solvents, are available in this way – and 22 European countries already ban the sale of tobacco through vending machines.
Three reasons why your letter matters:
1. The tobacco industry has been using scare tactics to convince small shops that this will bankrupt their businesses. There is no evidence that it will.
2. The tobacco industry has been using front groups, such as the Save our Shop campaign, to lobby politicians without revealing that they are industry funded.
3. The tobacco industry has, as it did with lung cancer, been challenging the scientific evidence for introducing these measures. They aim, in their own words, to " throw sand in the gears” of regulatory reform.
Senior Policy and Campaigns Officer
Action on Smoking & Health
144-145 Shoreditch High Street
Tel: 020 7739 5902
Fax: 020 7729 4732
Action on Smoking and Health is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England No. 998971. Registered Charity No. 262067. Registered address as above.
Is there no lengths this lying scum will go to further demonise the smoker?