Sunderland Council’s smoking fine shame

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In reply to Gillian Gibson’s letter. As Director of Public Health for Sunderland City Council, I know that she, along with most other people (including myself) was delighted that smoking was finally banned from indoor public places and work places.

However, it was also banned from bus stations and bus shelters. Sunderland Council should hang its head in shame because it absolutely refuses to do its duty and fine these anti-social criminals. In ten years it hasn’t fined one person for smoking at Park Lane Interchange. If it had done, it would have raked in thousands of pounds. Non-smokers are forced to wait outside the shelters in all weathers or else breathe in cigarette smoke or risk it stinking their hair and clothes or even clothes or skin being burned.

Holmeside, near the old market, is a particularly bad place, but also Royal Hospital shelters. However, it happens all over Sunderland.

I imagine Gillian Gibson and councillors use cars but they know what is happening – there have been letters and complaints for ten years. Their responsibility doesn’t begin and end with sticking ‘No Smoking’ signs in shelters and the bus station. Don’t pat yourselves on the back until the job is done properly and thoroughly.



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