MPs in Worcestershire divided on smoking ban in cars with children

House of Commons: voted to ban smoking in cars carrying children

House of Commons: voted to ban smoking in cars carrying children

First published in News
Last updated
Evesham Journal: Tom Edwards by , Political Reporter

MPs in Worcestershire were divided on whether smoking should be banned in cars carrying children - with one parliamentarian saying police have better things to do.

West Worcestershire Harriett Baldwin, who was promoted to Government assistant whip on Saturday, voted against the ban last night, saying there are major crimes police need to focus on.

However Worcester's Robin Walker, Mid-Worcestershire's Peter Luff and Mark Garnier, who represents the Wyre Forest, all backed it.

The vote - passed by 376 votes to 107 - means the Government now has powers to bring in the crackdown for the first time ever.

Mr Walker said: "The public health concerns around smoking are very clear.

"I do think police have had a hard time enforcing the ban on mobile phones, but I don't think anyone can argue that this won't be a good thing.

"On balance I support the ban as the fact it may be difficult to enforce isn't a reason to not vote for it."

Mr Luff took the unusual decision of asking his 5,100 Twitter followers what he should do.

He said the tweet led to "100 per cent support" from constituents in favour of a ban.

"The constituents told me the freedom of children to enjoy good health trumps all other arguments," he said.

"It didn't make my mind up for me, but it informed my view.

"It's about protecting the vulnerable and making sure children are not passive smokers."

The Coalition decided to give MPs a free vote on the debate last night, meaning they were not asked to back the views of their respective party leaders.

Mrs Baldwin said she would prefer police to concentrate on other crimes like drugs, metal theft and burglaries.

"I am against smoking in cars with children but do not think it should be illegal," she said.

"I would prefer the police focus their time on drug related crime, catalytic converter thefts, metal theft and rural burglaries."

MPs voted in favour of an amendment to the Children and Families Bill, which empowers ministers to bring in a ban in England.

Prime Minister David Cameron missed the vote because he was visiting flood stricken parts of the South West, but Downing Street now says it will legislate for the ban.

Comments (3)

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4:42pm Tue 11 Feb 14

pudniw_gib says...

Baldwin is an idiot. Only an idiot would subject children to a car full of smoke.
Many of us had to put up with our parents smoking in the car when we were kids and absolutely loathed it.
Baldwin is an idiot. Only an idiot would subject children to a car full of smoke. Many of us had to put up with our parents smoking in the car when we were kids and absolutely loathed it. pudniw_gib
  • Score: -2

1:42am Wed 12 Feb 14

PrivateSi says...

Parentnoia makes an **** out of the law with all it's whining nanny-statism... The type of people who slowly complicate the legal system, policing & society to the point of madness...

We all should have the right to INSULT these selfish smokers but it's their vehicle, their kids and it's not directly threatening their lives... unless you want to say ban smoking in general then I'd say a withdrawing smoker is more of a liability on the road, and to his/her children than a smoking driver...

BE REAL, not rash, reactionary BANNERS... You make your petty police state larger every day... You're being spied on everywhere, all your personal details shared and you sheeple CRY OUT for MORE LAW, more WAR, more 'SECURITY' for 'The 'Iccle Children'... I'd like children not to grow up in a Dracon's Dream - A TOTALITARIAN FRIGHTMARE... we're almost there...

Freedom is eroded slowly and technocratically in The West who direct the PARENTNOID MASSES.....
Parentnoia makes an **** out of the law with all it's whining nanny-statism... The type of people who slowly complicate the legal system, policing & society to the point of madness... We all should have the right to INSULT these selfish smokers but it's their vehicle, their kids and it's not directly threatening their lives... unless you want to say ban smoking in general then I'd say a withdrawing smoker is more of a liability on the road, and to his/her children than a smoking driver... BE REAL, not rash, reactionary BANNERS... You make your petty police state larger every day... You're being spied on everywhere, all your personal details shared and you sheeple CRY OUT for MORE LAW, more WAR, more 'SECURITY' for 'The 'Iccle Children'... I'd like children not to grow up in a Dracon's Dream - A TOTALITARIAN FRIGHTMARE... we're almost there... Freedom is eroded slowly and technocratically in The West who direct the PARENTNOID MASSES..... PrivateSi
  • Score: 2

12:36pm Wed 12 Feb 14

The Curious Kumquat says...

It's a step in the right direction though although these kids may not be subjected to passive smoking in the car at least they'll still be suffering at home. Personally I think they should just ban smoking whilst driving full stop as it's a dangerous distraction and probably on a par with using a mobile.

As for policing it, I'm sure the same arguments were put about when they made it compulsory to use seat belts. Now the vast majority of us stick to that rule, and anyway it's in your own best interests,
It's a step in the right direction though although these kids may not be subjected to passive smoking in the car at least they'll still be suffering at home. Personally I think they should just ban smoking whilst driving full stop as it's a dangerous distraction and probably on a par with using a mobile. As for policing it, I'm sure the same arguments were put about when they made it compulsory to use seat belts. Now the vast majority of us stick to that rule, and anyway it's in your own best interests, The Curious Kumquat
  • Score: -1

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