Speeches recovered from the Conservative party’s online archive More…

Morgan: Smoking in public places in Wales

Speech to the National Assembly for Wales.

"I am delighted to be able to contribute to this debate in my capacity as one of the members of the committee that examined the evidence, both written and oral; I have contributed to the recommendations in this report.

Our party—and I know that other groups are doing the same—is having a free vote in this issue, which is probably just as well, given that there are a variety of opinions on this issue.

It is not just a matter of whether it is right to introduce a ban, but there is the extent of the ban, the enforceability of that ban and the arguments around the economic impact, if such a ban were to be introduced.

I thank Val Lloyd for the way in which she chaired the committee. I also put on record my thanks to those people who gave evidence to the committee, especially those who were there on behalf of the pro-smoking wing, if I can put it in those terms.

I suspect that they were feeling rather out of it when they came to give evidence to the committee, knowing full well that the Assembly had, some time ago, already put its opinion on record with regard to a ban on smoking in public places. I thank all of those people for contributing in the way in which they did.

For me, this is one of those more tricky subjects, particularly as I am a Tory. I believe in choice and individual rights, but I also believe in the protection of public health and the protection of those who work in the hospitality sector, particularly in bars and clubs.

We looked at the medical evidence, which formed the core of our review and consideration. We looked at those five studies produced over six years, all of which pointed to a strong relationship between environmental tobacco smoke and cancer and cardio-vascular disease.

The Scientific Committee on Tobacco and Health report in 1998, which was commissioned by all UK health departments, found a significant increase in the risk of lung cancer in those who are exposed to environmental tobacco smoke in the long term, with an increase in the range of 20 to 30 per cent—and these people are non-smokers.

The evidence that we received, therefore, was compelling from a medical point of view. That is something that the Assembly should take into consideration when considering whether to support the recommendations and the report.

I was satisfied with the range of evidence that we received that highlighted the health risks and the consistency in the evidence referred to by Val Lloyd when she opened the debate.

We did examine whether ventilation equipment would be sufficient to remove the elements that can damage a non-smoker in, for example, pubs and clubs.

The evidence that we received was conflicting, between the manufacturers' lobby on the one hand and the British Medical Association on the other. However, the BMA and the medical evidence concluded that ventilation could not remove the type of particulate matter that is inhaled quite deeply into the lungs before those particulates come anywhere near ventilation systems.

There is a problem in that we could not see, and no evidence was provided to suggest, that ventilation would remove the risk from our bars, pubs and clubs, for those who face the risk of lung cancer and cardio-vascular disease.

I ask Members to read the evidence and what we have said in the report, and to see the independence of that evidence, as it is important when you take this decision this afternoon.

In respect of the effect on the economy, I regret that we were not able to spend a significant or sufficient amount of time looking at the economic impact, although the studies and the range of evidence that we had at our disposal, pointed to a negative impact—if anything—on the economy.

Some people who say that the Irish experience points to a significant down-turn in economic performance, will have to take into account that the down-turn in the Irish economy started before the ban was introduced.

That said—and I am very much on my own on this particular issue, I suspect, in relation to other members of the committee—I am content and fairly comfortable with the amendment that Leighton has tabled this afternoon.

We do not currently have the power to effect this ban. We do not know when we will have the power to do so. In the meantime, I am comfortable with further examination of the economic impact on small and medium-sized companies.

In conclusion, enforceability is a huge issue. This will be difficult to enforce and the Government will have to think carefully as to how it can enforce this in large bars and clubs in places such as Cardiff and, equally, in smaller, more rural pubs in many parts of Wales."

"Mae'n bleser gennyf allu cyfrannu at y ddadl hon yn rhinwedd fy swydd fel un o aelodau'r pwyllgor a archwiliodd y dystiolaeth, yn ysgrifenedig ac ar lafar; cyfrannais at yr argymhellion yn yr adroddiad hwn.

Mae ein plaid ni—a gwn fod grwpiau eraill yn gwneud yr un peth—yn cael pleidlais rydd ar y mater hwn, a gorau oll, gan fod amrywiaeth barn ar y mater hwn. Nid oes a wnelo â pha un a yw'n iawn i gyflwyno gwaharddiad yn unig, ond rhaid ystyried graddau'r gwaharddiad, y broses o orfodi'r gwaharddiad hwnnw a'r dadleuon o ran yr effaith amgylcheddol, pe câi gwaharddiad o'r fath ei gyflwyno.

Diolchaf i Val Lloyd am y ffordd y cadeiriodd y pwyllgor. Cofnodaf hefyd fy niolch i'r bobl hynny a roddodd dystiolaeth i'r pwyllgor, yn enwedig y rhai a oedd yno ar ran yr adain a oedd o blaid ysmygu, os gallaf ei eirio felly.

Yr wyf yn amau iddynt deimlo braidd nad oeddent yn rhan o hyn pan ddaethant i roi tystiolaeth i'r pwyllgor, gan wybod yn iawn fod y Cynulliad, beth amser yn ôl, wedi cofnodi ei farn o ran gwahardd ysmygu mewn mannau cyhoeddus. Diolchaf i'r holl bobl hynny am gyfrannu yn y ffordd a wnaethant.

I mi, mae hwn yn un o'r pynciau mwy cymhleth hynny, yn enwedig gan fy mod yn aelod o'r Blaid Dorïaidd. Yr wyf o blaid dewis a hawliau'r unigolyn, ond yr wyf hefyd o blaid diogelu iechyd cyhoeddus a diogelu'r rhai sy'n gweithio yn y sector lletygarwch, yn enwedig mewn tafarnau a chlybiau.

Edrychwyd ar y dystiolaeth feddygol, a oedd yn ffurfio craidd ein hadolygiad a'n hystyriaeth. Edrychwyd ar y pum astudiaeth a gynhyrchwyd dros gyfnod o chwe blynedd, yr oeddent oll yn cyfeirio at gysylltiad cryf rhwng mwg tybaco amgylcheddol a chanser a chlefyd cardiofasgwlaidd.

Bu i adroddiad y Pwyllgor Gwyddonol ar Dybaco ac Iechyd yn 1998, a gomisiynwyd gan holl adrannau iechyd y DU, ganfod cynnydd sylweddol yn y risg o ganser yr ysgyfaint yn y rhai sy'n agored i fwg tybaco amgylcheddol yn yr hirdymor, gyda chynnydd yn yr ystod o 20 i 30 y cant—ac nid yw'r bobl hyn yn ysmygu.

Yr oedd y dystiolaeth a dderbyniasom, felly, yn gymhellol o safbwynt meddygol. Mae hynny'n rhywbeth y dylai'r Cynulliad ei ystyried wrth benderfynu a ddylai gefnogi'r argymhellion a'r adroddiad ai peidio.

Yr oeddwn yn fodlon ar yr ystod o dystiolaeth a dderbyniasom a oedd yn amlygu'r risgiau i iechyd a'r cysondeb yn y dystiolaeth y cyfeiriodd Val Lloyd ati pan agorodd y drafodaeth.

Archwiliwyd pa un a fyddai system awyru yn ddigon i gael gwared ar yr elfennau a all niweidio person nad yw'n ysmygu, er enghraifft, mewn tafarnau a chlybiau.

Yr oedd y dystiolaeth a dderbyniasom yn wrthgyferbyniol, rhwng safbwynt y gweithgynhyrchwyr ar y naill llaw a Chymdeithas Feddygol Prydain ar y llaw arall.

Fodd bynnag, daeth Cymdeithas Feddygol Prydain a'r dystiolaeth feddygol i'r casgliad na fyddai system awyru yn gallu cael gwared ar y math o ronynnau a gaiff eu hanadlu'n eithaf dwfn i'r ysgyfaint cyn i'r gronynnau hynny fynd yn agos at systemau awyru.

Mae problem yn codi yn yr ystyr na allem weld, ac ni ddarparwyd unrhyw dystiolaeth i awgrymu, y byddai system awyru yn cael gwared ar y risg o'n barrau, tafarnau a chlybiau, i'r rheini sy'n wynebu'r risg o ganser yr ysgyfaint a chlefyd cardiofasgwlaidd.

Gofynnaf i Aelodau ddarllen y dystiolaeth a'r hyn a ddywedwyd gennym yn y adroddiad, ac i weld annibynniaeth y dystiolaeth honno, am ei bod yn bwysig wrth ichi wneud y penderfyniad hwn y prynhawn yma.

O ran yr effaith ar yr economi, mae'n drueni nad oeddem yn gallu treulio cyfnod sylweddol neu ddigonol o amser yn edrych ar yr effaith economaidd, er bod yr astudiaethau a'r ystod o dystiolaeth a oedd ar gael inni, yn cyfeirio at yr effaith negyddol—os unrhyw beth—ar yr economi.

Bydd yn rhaid i'r bobl hynny sy'n dweud bod y profiad yn Iwerddon wedi arwain at ddirywiad sylweddol mewn perfformiad economaidd ystyried y ffaith bod y dirywiad yn economi Iwerddon wedi dechrau cyn i'r gwaharddiad gael ei gyflwyno.

A dweud hynny—a thybiaf fy mod ar fy mhen fy hun i raddau helaeth ar y mater arbennig hwn o ran aelodau eraill o'r pwyllgor—yr wyf yn fodlon ac yn gymharol gyfforddus â'r gwelliant a gyflwynwyd gan Leighton y prynhawn yma.

Nid oes gennym y pwer i weithredu'r gwaharddiad hwn ar hyn o bryd. Ni wyddom pryd y bydd gennym y pwer i wneud hynny. Yn y cyfamser, yr wyf yn fodlon i fwy o ymchwil gael ei gwneud i'r effaith economaidd ar gwmnïau bach a chanolig eu maint.

I gloi, mae gorfodadwyedd yn fater enfawr. Bydd hyn yn anodd ei orfodi a bydd yn rhaid i'r Llywodraeth feddwl yn ofalus am sut y gall orfodi hyn mewn barrau a chlybiau mawr mewn lleoedd fel Caerdydd ac, yn yr un ffordd, mewn tafarnau llai, mwy gwledig mewn llawer o rannau o Gymru."

Keyboard shortcuts

j previous speech k next speech