Wales is extending its smoking ban, making it illegal to smoke in outdoor school spaces, playgrounds and hospital grounds.
Anyone caught smoking in these areas by the authorities will be issued with a fine.
Wales is the first country in the UK to make smoking outside illegal, a decision which has been branded the ‘single most important public health reform in generations’ by Public Health England boss Duncan Selbie.
The purpose of this law is to prevent non-smokers from inhaling any second-hand smoke, as well as to ‘de-normalise’ smoking for young people.
Around 5,500 people die every year in Wales as a result of smoking. If the cost of this on family lives is not enough, it is also believed to cost the NHS over £300 million annually.
This ban would not have been made possible were public opinion not as anti-smoking as it now is. Indeed, Vaughan Gething, the Welsh Health Secretary, has said the latest decision has received ‘overwhelming public support’.
Almost two million people in Britain stopped smoking after the 2007 smoking ban which prevented smoking in enclosed public spaces.
This law shall shortly be introduced to the Public Health (Wales) Act 2017.