Huntingdonshire MPs weigh in on debate over smoking in cars with children as passengers

PUBLISHED: 12:00 15 February 2014 | UPDATED: 10:30 17 February 2014

Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly.

Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly.

Archant

Huntingdonshire’s MPs voted on opposing sides in the debate about banning smoking in cars when children are present.

Shailesh Vara, MP for North West Cambridgeshire. Shailesh Vara, MP for North West Cambridgeshire.

On Monday (February 10), MPs voted by 376 to 107 in favour of an amendment to the Children and Families Bill which gives the Government the power to introduce a ban.

While North West Cambridgeshire MP Shailesh Vara voted with the majority, Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly was one of those who voted “no”.

Mr Djanogly, who quit smoking 10 years ago, said: “I like laws to be enforceable. I don’t know how this is going to be enforced. Smoking is not something I would recommend is done in front of children, in or out of a car. But we live in a society where smoking is legal and homes and cars are private places. If you’re going to bring in a ban for cars, I don’t see any difference between a car and a kitchen.”

Meanwhile, Mr Vara said he supported a ban on health grounds. “The reason why I voted for the ban is that people do die of passive smoking.

“With adults, when they are about to smoke, they ask other adults whether it is OK. In a car, nobody asks the child if they can smoke so I am sticking up for the child.”

Government ministers will now decide whether to introduce legislation.

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