‘E-cigarettes’ Spark Workplace Smoking Row

blog-publish-date

02 Jan 2013

blog-read-duration

London 4 December 2012 – The rise in popularity of ‘electronic cigarettes’ has fuelled workplace smoking rows according to HR and health & safety expert, Croner . Over the last few months Croner, part of global information services business Wolters Kluwer, has seen a substantial rise in calls to its advice lines from employers concerned about the use of e-cigarettes at work. E-cigarettes are an increasingly being used by smokers who view them as the ‘healthier’ alternative to traditional cigarettes or tobacco*. Basil Long, senior legal adviser at Croner, says: “From a legal perspective as e-cigarettes are not ‘lit’ then there is no reason why they cannot be used within the workplace. This may be acceptable for some employers, but the ones calling our advisory service are concerned about the use of e-cigarettes and wonder if they can either discipline an employee for ‘smoking’ at work or ban it altogether. “The majority of workplace smoking policies do not specifically define smoking, and in the absence of any specific definition, a court of law would defer to the Health Act 2006 which define smoking as ‘lit tobacco or anything lit that contains tobacco, or of any other lit substance in a form in which it could be smoked’.  As a result it would not be safe to rely on such a policy to discipline employees using e-cigarettes in the workplace. Therefore employers wishing to ban the use of e-cigarettes will need to amend their policy.   “A workplace smoking policy can normally be adapted very easily to extend the definition of smoking to include the use of e-cigarettes, however as with any other changes to employment policies, care needs to be taken to ensure the change is effective and not challenged by employees.”

- Ends –

Notes to Editors * Wikipedia provides a definition of e-cigarettes here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronic_cigarette  

Free to Download Employer Resources

  • Model Apprenticeship Agreement

    FREE DOWNLOAD

    Model Apprenticeship Agreement

    Read more
  • Sample COSHH Assessment Record

    FREE DOWNLOAD

    Sample COSHH Assessment Record

    Read more
  • Return to Work Interview Form

    FREE DOWNLOAD

    Return to Work Interview Form

    Read more
  • BLOG

    Avoiding Slips, Trips and Falls in th...

    Whether your staff is in an office or on a construction site, every workplace ha...

    Read more
  • BLOG

    Daylight Saving Time: The Implication...

    Daylight Saving Time is coming to an end on Sunday 27 October, with the clocks g...

    Read more
  • BLOG

    Top Tips to De-escalate Conflict

    Conflict can take many forms. Whatever the nature of the conflict, it's in your...

    Read more
  • REC

    CASE STUDY

    REC

    The events are brilliant. Amanda Chadwick, one of the expert speakers, is a very

    Read more
  • Grantley Hall

    CASE STUDY

    Grantley Hall

    Whenever we have a sensitive issue - sometimes involving individuals with protec

    Read more
  • Lady Heyes Holiday Park

    CASE STUDY

    Lady Heyes Holiday Park

    Overall it's definitely had a noticeable impact on the business and how I perfor

    Read more

Do you have any questions?

Get a free callback from one of our regional experts today