From Iceland — Further Restrictions On Tobacco Proposed

Further Restrictions On Tobacco Proposed

Published May 31, 2011

A parliamentary proposal could ban the smoking of cigarettes on apartment balconies, and make tobacco only legal for sale from pharmacies.
The proposal in question is a parliamentary proposal (þingsályktun); not a bill. The difference between the two is that while a bill is the draft that goes through an appropriate committee a few times for fine tuning before being either voted into law or rejected, a proposal simply outlines a general plan of action that the government is encouraged to work towards. It is, in another words, an often vaguely-worded proposal that pertains to long-term goals.
This particular proposal, submitted by nine MPs hailing from every party, outlines a 10-year plan for the Ministry of Welfare regarding tobacco use. “Access to tobacco would be limited at decided points in time,” the proposal reads in part. “The sale of it would be stopped in steps, such as near schools, in grocery stores, at corner shops, at petrol stations and so on. Then it would only be sold in pharmacies, at the end of this period.”
But the proposal does not just recommend limiting the sale of tobacco; it also seeks to limit where it could be smoked.
Smoking would be limited in public areas, such as in public buildings, on sidewalks, and in parks. Smoking would be disallowed in cars when children under 18 are riding in them. It would also not be permitted on the balconies of apartment buildings, or anywhere near pregnant women.
For the curious, the MPs supporting this proposal are Siv Friðleifsdóttir (Progressive), Þuríður Backman (Leftist-Green), Ásta R. Jóhannesdóttir (Social Democrat), Árni Johnsen (Conservative), Margrét Tryggvadóttir (The Movement), Álfheiður Ingadóttir (Leftist-Green), Þór Saari (The Movement), Ólína Þorvarðardóttir (Social Democrat) and Eygló Harðardóttir (Progressive).

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