HUDDERSFIELD'S director of public health has supported a smoking ban in public places
It follows reports from The Royal College of Medicine that second-hand smoke causes an estimated 1,000 adult deaths in the UK each year.
Dr Sohail Bhatti, Director of Public Health for Huddersfield Central and South Huddersfield primary care trusts, has welcomed the call by the presidents of Britain's Royal College of Medicine for a legal ban on second-hand smoke.
Dr Bhatti says: "Opponents of a smoking ban suggest that non-smoking areas would be a good solution to the problem, but they aren't - smoke drifts.
"And employees who have to work in the remaining smoking areas will still be exposed to harm.
"Nor are ventilation systems a good answer - even the most expensive systems on the market don't take all the dangerous chemicals out of the atmosphere fast or thoroughly enough to prevent damage to health."
The call was made after press reports that the Government is reluctant to follow the example of Ireland, New York and elsewhere to introduce a ban on smoking in workplaces and enclosed public places.
Dr Bhatti said at least 3m employees were still regularly exposed to second- hand smoke in the workplace.
Most restaurant chains and almost all pubs continue to permit smoking on the premises.
Dr Bhatti said: "Opponents argue that a ban on smoking at work and in bars and restaurants would be an unacceptable attack on the freedom of adult citizens to choose whether or not to smoke.
"But no one has a right to engage in activities that cause direct harm to the health of others."
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