Sheffield Liberal Democrats call council leader to push government over disposable vapes
The Liberal Democrats submitted a motion in this week’s full council meeting asking Cllr Tom Hunt, the leader of the council, to write to the health secretary asking for single-use vapes to be banned.
The LibDems are saying that disposable vapes are “a hazard for waste and litter collection and cause fires in bin lorries” and there are approximately 1.3 million vapes thrown away each week.
An Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) data shows that 8.6 per cent of 11- 18-year-olds in England vaped in 2022, compared with four per cent in 2021.
It was also reported that among those who tried vaping 40.1 per cent had never smoked before.
Cllr Shaffaq Mohammed, the leader of the Sheffield Liberal Democrats, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: “We are seeing lots and lots of these single-use vapes now in various parts of the city and shopping centres, near schools, etc.
“They’re posing a fire risk, as well, so what we’re saying is that there are vapes that are available that help people.
“We’re not about banning vapes, per se, but we want to get rid of single-use vapes not only in Sheffield but also across the country.
“I hope we can use our contacts in local governments elsewhere to say if Sheffield can do it, let’s get all councils behind it – and get legislation (passed) from the government saying they’re banning these vapes.
“A letter from the council leader backed by all 83 councillors is what we’re hoping for this Wednesday…
“This is not about stopping you vaping.”
Greg Fell, the director of public health in Sheffield, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that a government ban on disposable vapes may “not make it go away” and create an illegal and illicit market instead.
He said: “If the government chose to go down the ban route, I don’t know whether they will or not, it may not solve the problem. It may turn out to be an illegal problem.
“It may not. I don’t know that. I genuinely don’t know.”
Sheffield City Council will discuss the motion at this week’s full council meeting at 2pm on Wednesday (December 6).