Dundee council’s radical anti-smoking policy prohibits employees from using e-cigarettes indoors and outdoors during work hours, even off-site and during lunch breaks.
The policy was created in response to the Scottish government’s tobacco control policy, aimed at achieving a ‘tobacco-free generation’.
UK public health bodies have largely embraced e-cigarettes as a less-harmful alternative to smoking. However, the new policy lumps the two together.
The Dundee Evening Telegraph who published the story contacted Forest for comment.
Director Simon Clark said:
“Threatening employees with disciplinary action if they smoke during work breaks or while they’re working out of doors, out of uniform and between locations, is tantamount to bullying.
“A ban on vaping is even worse. There is a clear distinction between ‘conventional’ smoking and the use of e-cigarettes and council policy should reflect that.”
Mr Clark highlighted the role e-cigarettes continue to play in helping the UK’s smokers quit and called on the council to encourage employees to make the switch.
“If there is a genuine desire to help employees stop smoking, smokers should be encouraged to vape, not threatened with the same penalties they face if caught smoking.
“Smoking or vaping, the council is over-reaching its powers. Policing our lifestyle, as long as it doesn’t have a direct impact on our work or colleagues, is not the business of local government.”