It all depends on the place of work

For example, many workplaces treat e-cigarettes as though they are the equivalent to traditional cigarettes. Some notable companies that take this stance are the BBC, Shell and Standard Life. However, others have realised that tobacco cigarettes are completely different to e-cigarettes and much safer – one notable example being Conde Nast, who allow the use of e-cigarettes within their offices.

 

ACAS, is the Advisory Conciliation and Arbitration Service and is a Crown non-departmental public body of the Government in the UK. They offer help and advice for employers and employees. They state that: “E-cigarettes fall outside the scope of smoke free legislation as the act of smoking requires a substance to be burnt, so employers can choose whether to allow employees to smoke them at work or not.”

 

If you are wondering whether your workplace have a position on allowing vaping at work, it is best to consult management or the HR department before vaping. ACAS advises management to take into consideration that it could irritate co-workers  who aren’t aware that it is vapour, not smoke that is emitting from e-ecig usage. They also go on to say that due to the fact that e-cigs have not been very prominent within the UK until recent years, the long-term effects of them are unknown and there could possibly be a health risk through passive consumption. Some e-cigarettes, namely disposable ecigs, can closely resemble traditional cigarettes however the vast majority of e-cigarettes, especially those that allow for refillable e-liquids are easily distinguishable from a traditional cigarette.

 

ACAS also go on to say that it could impose a large health risk to workers if e-cigarettes are banned from offices and workplaces as many people use e-cigarettes as a way to stop smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes. Tobacco cigarettes can contain “more than 7,000 chemicals when burned”, with at least 69 of these being known to cause cancer and many others being poisonous. Supportive employers of vaping can take a stance to improve their employees health by allowing e-cigarettes as a plan to stop smoking as recent studies from Public Health England have shown that they are around 95% less harmful.

ACAS state: preventing the use of E-cigarettes at work may hinder those who use them to stop smoking, particularly if they are required to smoke them in designated smoking areas together with cigarette smokers” which would lead to passive smoking.

Passive smoking, also known as second-hand smoke, is estimated to kill “over 12,000 people in the UK from lung cancer, heart disease, stroke and the lung disease Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).”

 

Some employers already have restrictions and rules in the workplace regarding e-cigarettes.  If you manage or work in an environment that hasn’t thought about these regulations, then it would be well worth taking into consideration the information in this article which is sourced from trusted and unbiased outlets, as opposed to many popular sourceless media outlets.
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