Kieran McCarthy MLA said: “The smoking ban has been real success. I would like to take this opportunity to praise bar and restaurant staff as they have helped enforce the ban very well.
“We now need to see the Health Minister raise the legal age for buying tobacco from 16 to 18. All steps that can be taken to stop young people smoking must be taken. Less people smoking would mean more hospital resources freed up to treat other patients. Prevention is better that cure and less smoking would even mean shorter hospital waiting lists.
“I would strongly encourage people to stub out their habit as it will do them the world of good and boost their bank balance too.”