Workplace regulations on vaping to be explored by University of Leicester researchers

Posted by ap507 at Aug 22, 2017 10:43 AM |
Research team receives grant from Cancer Research UK for research project examining difficulties of regulating e-cigarettes

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 22 August 2017­

Researchers from the University of Leicester will be examining the difficulties of regulating e-cigarettes and if heavy regulations could be encouraging users to move back to combustible tobacco as part of a new project funded by Cancer Research UK.

Dr Charlotte Smith, of the University of Leicester’s School of Business, in collaboration with Professor Jason Hughes and Dr Grace Sykes from the School of Media, Communication and Sociology, has recently been awarded £26,000, from Cancer Research UK’s Tobacco Advisory Group.

The project titled ‘The Regulation of E-Cigarettes in and Around Organisational Lives’, will begin this month.

The research will explore the complexities of regulating e-cigarettes in non-statutory policies. For example, if e-cigarettes are too heavily regulated in the workplace, it may paradoxically encourage users to move back to combustible tobacco.

Dr Smith said: “E-cigarette usage is potentially the most significant grass roots shift in public health behaviours over the last century, and whilst recent EU legislation has introduced a range of measures aimed at restricting the sale, marketing, advertising, packaging, and supply of e-cigarette devices and consumables, in the UK there are no statutory restrictions on vaping in the workplace or other public places.

“Notwithstanding this, many workplaces and public places have developed quite wide-ranging policies and restrictions on e-cigarette consumption.”

Professor Hughes said: “If vapers are pushed ‘on to the doorstep’ alongside smokers, what are the implications for how they think about vaping?

“Might, for example, those users who see it as a means of smoking cessation be encouraged instead to think about it as ‘just another’ means of recreational nicotine use?”

The project will reduce systemic confusion on vaping practice and consider how non-statutory policies inform, as well as become informed by notions of relative risk.

It will adopt a mixed-methods, multi-level study of vapers, non-vapers and dual user vaper/smokers in an array of UK organisations and seeks to develop guidelines for workplace vaping policies.

Professor Linda Bauld, Cancer Research UK’s cancer prevention expert, said: “E-cigarettes are still a relatively new product but the evidence so far shows that they are far safer than tobacco. Cancer Research UK continues to invest in research to find out more about their potential to help smokers ditch tobacco for good, and also identify the challenges around regulating how and where they are used. This is a valuable project and we look forward to seeing the results of this research.”

Professor Jason Hughes’s first book, Learning to Smoke, was winner of the 2006 Norbert Elias prize and explored the socio-legal regulation as well as the processes of ‘self-regulation’ in relation to smoking.

ENDS 

Notes to editors:

For more information contact Dr Charlotte Smith on email cvls1@le.ac.uk

About Cancer Research UK

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