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​World Health Organisation Indicate That E Cigarettes Should Not Be Smoked Indoors

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A rather large bone of contention for the e smoking industry has been that the WHO (World Health Organisation) has to date refused to classify e smoking as safe, healthy, healthier than tobacco or indeed as anything. They appear to be sitting firmly on the fence on this issue despite being happy to classify tobacco smoking as highly dangerous and classifying many of the chemicals found in tobacco cigarettes as toxic and cancer-causing.

The reason that WHO, as well as a number of other health and regulatory bodies have been reluctant to give e smoking the green light to date has been down to lack of evidence. They claim that while e smoking has been around since 2004 that not enough studies have been commissioned and carried out over a long enough period of time to effectively prove what the e smoking industry already know; that e smoking is cleaner than tobacco smoking and it is believed healthier (when you consider the lack of chemicals in e smoking that are very present in tobacco cigarettes).

Despite their ambivalence with regards ruling either way WHO have not remained silent. They have recently called for e cigarette smoking to be banned indoors in the same way that tobacco smoking has been as part of the Go Smoke Free legislation.

There are many opinions on this issue, some backing WHO in this, agreeing that it is too soon to see whether or not there are any passive smoking concerns attached to e smoking. Others are worried that e smoking indoors may normalise smoking and once more encourage non-smokers and ex-smokers to start smoking (tobacco).

At present the majority of e smokers choose to smoke outdoors out of courtesy and having switched over from tobacco cigarettes, out of habit. Airlines already prohibit e smoking, as do many business owners. So far this hasn't caused any significant issue or hardship and it is unlikely that a blanket ban will make any difference to e smokers.

Interestingly not all professionals back WHO's stance with Gerry Stimson from the Imperial College London feeling that WHO's paper which supports the call seems to have been based on "cherry picked" science and "unnecessary scaremongering". Stimson believes that it would be detrimental to all should an immediate heavy handed ban on indoor e smoking be put in place as this would undermine the benefits many perceive regarding e smoking and may even cause e smokers to return to conventional smoking which is known to be harmful.

What do you think? Should e smoking be allowed indoors or not (and why?).