Categories: Politics

Hessen wants to ban smoking and steaming in playgrounds

Hessen wants to ban smoking and steaming in playgrounds

The state of Hesse wants to minimize the dangers of passive smoking. The government is therefore planning to ban cigarettes on playgrounds and in marquees. The opposition sees loopholes in the plans.

With a smoking ban on children’s playgrounds, Hessen wants to increase protection against the dangers of passive smoking in the future. In addition, e-cigarettes are also to be covered by the Non-Smoking Protection Act in the future, the possible exceptions to the smoking ban for festival tents will be deleted. The Minister of Social Affairs Kai Klose (Greens) said on Tuesday in the state parliament in Wiesbaden.

E-cigarettes equated with tobacco

“We want to protect people even better from the dangers of passive smoking in the future – especially children and young people, who are particularly at risk from it,” said the minister. The ban on smoking in playgrounds also supports the role model function of adults and shapes the image of a smoke-free society.

When consuming electronic cigarettes and tobacco heaters, some of the same substances are released into the ambient air as with conventional smoking, but also other harmful substances, according to the draft law. “Impaired air quality is particularly problematic for allergy sufferers, asthmatics, heart patients and people with damaged lungs and children.”

Therefore, these alternative forms of consumption must also be covered by the Non-Smoking Protection Act, emphasized Klose. There are also no technical reasons for the exception to the ban on smoking for festival tents – it will therefore be deleted.

Opposition sees gaps

There was approval from the opposition, but also criticism. “Why are you sticking to the exemption for casinos?” Asked the health policy spokeswoman for the left-wing parliamentary group, Christiane Böhm. It is also incomprehensible why it is still allowed to smoke in pubs in closed societies. Sit a child in a room full of tobacco smoke for an hour, be it as if they had smoked the cigarette themselves.

AfD MP Volker Richter said the draft had glaring gaps. There are still no regulations that protect shisha bar visitors from carbon monoxide poisoning. The SPD MP Daniela Sommer welcomed the tightening, especially with a view to protecting children. The smoking ban on playgrounds is already being implemented in other federal states and is “overdue”. It is very difficult for children to protect themselves from smoke and poisoning from cigarette butts on their own.

The CDU member of the state parliament, Max Schad, pointed to a significantly increased risk of falling seriously ill with Covid-19 as a smoker. “Smoking is and will remain the largest preventable risk factor for a whole range of diseases including cancer, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases.”