OBJECTIONS have been raised after it emerged more than £20m of Devon’s public sector pensions funds are invested in tobacco and alcohol companies.
Councillor Gordon Hook, Lib Dem member for Newton Abbot South, responded angrily to revelations by county council leader John Hart that the Devon Pension Fund, of which the authority is a member, had investments in unspecified companies in the sectors.
Responding to a question raised by Cllr Hook at the county council’s latest cabinet meeting, Cllr Hart said: “The county council does not have any investment funds with tobacco or alcohol companies, but it is only one of 89 member bodies that comprise the Devon Pension Fund.
“At December 31, 2009, pension fund investments in tobacco companies were valued at just under £8m — 0.4 per cent of the total fund — and investments in alcohol companies were valued at just under £14m — 0.6 per cent of the total fund.I wish I was 18, I want to see her smoking, damn it!
FILMS that feature smoking should be given an automatic 18 rating to protect teenagers against taking up the habit, according to a new study [Ed: Yawn].
The analysis of hundreds of films released in the past decade found that young Britons see more cigarette use in movies than their US counterparts because the UK censors judge more films to be family friendly.
Researchers warn that the more smoking adolescents witness onscreen, the more their chances of taking up the habit increases, with those who see the most tobacco use about three times more likely to start smoking than those who watch the least.
The study, compiled by Dr Christopher Millett of Imperial College London and Professor Stanton Glantz of California University, [Ed: There’s that man again] advocated an overhaul of the ratings system.Minimum Pricing and unintended consequences.
SNP ministers have said they want to introduce a minimum price of 40p per unit on all drink, and outlaw offers on bulk purchases, such as buy-one-get-one-free deals. But the plans have failed to win opposition party support, amid criticism they will punish the majority of responsible drinkers and fail to target the problem properly.Pregnant? Live in Wales? Here, have a fag, you’ll produce a smaller “doll like” baby!
In evidence to be presented this morning, the Law Society of Scotland will place doubts over moves to prevent deals such as "three for two". It also points out that such moves may end up encouraging people to buy more drink than they do at present.
WALES has the highest rates of women who smoke during their pregnancy in the UK, shocking figures reveal today.
Despite the social taboo, the figures from anti-smoking charity ASH [Ed: ah, it must be true then] Wales show one-in-five women continue to smoke throughout pregnancy.It’s election time folks: Watch my lips, NO NEW TAXES, except for smokers, of course.
Midwives said many young women are smoking while pregnant because they believe they will have smaller “doll-like” babies.
CAMPAIGNERS are calling for the price of a packet of cigarettes to be increased to £7.42.
The Policy Exchange think tank say there should be a five per cent tax hike on fags announced in next week's Budget, followed by further rises over the next five years.
On current estimates, that would see the cost of a packet of cigarettes rise by £1.29 over the course of the next parliament.
Policy Exchange said the extra revenue would pay for health measures such as giving a £10 weekly reward to pregnant women who give up smoking.
They claimed the cost to the public of smoking far outweighed the revenue from duty, leaving the taxpayer with a 6.5p bill for every cigarette smoked.It’s those bloody drinkers again! Make them pay, I say.
Binge drinkers who end up in casualty over New Year should pay £500, says a Tory think-tank.
Revellers who down too much booze will cost the NHS £23million tonight alone, it calculates.
And the Policy Exchange, [Ed: Not them again? First they came for the smokers…]David Cameron's favourite think-tank, reckons they should contribute.
More than 700 people are expected to end up in hospital over New Year's Eve with serious drink related problems. Think-tank spokesman Henry Featherstone said: "Costs should be met by individuals, not the NHS."
The fee would be based on an admin cost of £532.
The Department for Health, which insisted the Government is acting to cut excessive drinking, rejected the idea.
It said: "The founding principle of the NHS is that services are available to all free of charge."I wonder what the righteous have in store for us all next week?