[W]hen the Welsh government held a consultation on whether to copy the Spanish ban, 79% of those who replied were against a ban, even after hundreds of responses had been stripped out.
Those against a ban include The Royal College of Physicians, Action on Smoking and Health, Cancer Research, Cardiff University, The British Heart Foundation, Tenovus and the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies.
Despite all this, the Welsh government is pushing ahead with plans to ban e-cigs in public places in Wales.Because the Welsh assembly was designed to bring democracy closer to the people, apparently. Good grief.
Some AMs who I’ve contacted in the past have refused to confirm their position on the basis that I was not resident in their area (the fact my company employs people in their area didn’t seem to count). Others just never replied. I’m going to be contacting AMs who have not confirmed their position, but if you can help out with the ‘unknowns’ let me know in the comments. I’d also love to hear what AMs have said to you.James, the blog author, then lists all the information he currently knows of voting intentions of Welsh AMs. Where you can help out - especially if you are in their constituency so they are obliged to reply - is by contacting the AMs who are in favour of the ban, are undecided, or who have not expressed their stance, and pointing out precisely why it's such a batshit crazy idea.
Do go read James's article, which not only lists the AMs in question along with their Twitter and other contact details, but also includes a couple of sample letters/emails you could send.
And in case you think it may be tilting at windmills to engage with these politicians, I also urge you to read Simon Thurlow's account of how Wales has got to this position, and how everyone from ASH Wales to the Assembly Petitions Committee has attempted to exclude the public all the way down the line. Unsuccessfully, so far, as the vote could teeter on a knife edge with only a small number of AMs required to switch sides for the proposal to be rejected (yes, it should be rejected almost unanimously, but we're talking about dunderheaded politicos here). Or, as Simon says ...
It is obvious from this state of affairs is that we have Mark Drakeford rattled and worried. We know he has not (and cannot) find credible evidence to back his ideological stance on eCigarettes. I believe he is also now aware that we are garnering support from the opposition parties against his puritanical plans. He also knows that we only need to persuade a small number of Labour AM’s to rebel against him and his plans will be in complete disarray.
So where does this leave our campaign?
Quite simply, I believe we are winning the battle. We are winning the hearts and minds of AM’s as we meet them. We have countered every single argument Drakeford has presented with sound scientific EVIDENCE. Finally, I believe that Mark Drakeford is finally coming to realise that we are a force to be reckoned with. We are not some ‘oiks’ from the Valleys with a grievance. We are, in fact, a learned body of people who know what we are talking about and can back up everything we say with solid scientific evidence.The upshot is that there is a very real chance of this pathetic policy being voted down, despite the Welsh state, its NGOs and fake charities doing their best to marginalise the public they are supposed to be serving. So please take a few minutes of your time to get stuck in and let odious people like Drakeford and his fellow arseclowns know their proposed law is fatally flawed, and has no place in a free democracy. But more politely than that, obviously.