McCarthy slams comments from Poots and calls on McGimpsey to enforce smoking ban on stage

Alliance Health spokesperson Kieran McCarthy has slammed comments from the Culture, Arts and Leisure Minister Edwin Poots who has asked for theatre and television not to be covered by the recent smoking ban. The Health Minister Michael McGimpsey had previously rejected calls for this exemption and stated that the ban would be enforced everywhere.

The Strangford MLA said: “I call on the Health minister to stand by his decision and not make an exemption for the stage.

“If the Health Minister decides to change his mind due to the remarks by Edwin Poots then several other sectors would then call that they also deserve an exemption and we would end up with a smoking ban that would only cover a few places.

“If we went down that road then there would be little point in having such a wide ranging smoking ban. The Minister must stick to the current policy otherwise he would undo all the good work that the smoking ban has already done.

“I must also criticise the remarks by Edwin Poots as he has done nothing but revive a debate that we thought we had sorted out months ago.”


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