February 11, 2019

Irish Cancer Society responds to reports of tobacco industry lobbying

The Irish Cancer Society has expressed concern at reports in the Sunday Business Post that a number of TDs and Senators have been subject to lobbying by the tobacco industry.

Averil Power, Chief Executive of the Irish Cancer Society said: “The tobacco industry cannot have a seat at the table in making public policy. Its products are responsible for almost 6,000 deaths a year in this country and costs our health system over €500 million a year. We are calling on all politicians and policy-makers to be vigilant and protect health policies from commercial and vested interests of the tobacco industry.

“The increase in lobbying by industry shows that despite stronger tobacco control laws in Ireland, tobacco lobbyists have not gone away. In particular, we cannot allow industry to use vaping as a Trojan horse that allows them to shape public policy."

Ireland has ratified and is a party to the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. This is the first global public health treaty and it requires members of Government, Government departments and state agencies to ensure that “in setting and implementing their public health policies with respect to tobacco control” they protect these policies from the tobacco industry.