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New Clause 5 — Smoke-free premises: exemptions

Part of Orders of the Day — Health Bill – in the House of Commons at 3:50 pm on 14th February 2006.

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Photo of Patricia Hewitt Patricia Hewitt Secretary of State, Department of Health 3:50 pm, 14th February 2006

I do indeed share my hon. Friend's surprise at that. All Labour Members believe that it is right to legislate to ban smoking in the vast majority of workplaces and public places, and I welcome the fact that at least some—perhaps many—Opposition Members now agree with us. However, there are different views inside and outside the House on exactly how far smoke-free legislation should extend and on where the balance should be struck between protecting people from harm and protecting people's freedom of choice.