The Anti-Tobacco Network (ATN) has taken its crusade against smoking to legislators and other policy makers asking them to support the development of tobacco law that will prohibit smoking in public areas.
ATN strongly believes that tobacco companies are not like other businesses, as they intentionally make their products addictive, knowing that their products do kill. They also deceive the public and policy makers by attempting to appear credible and trustworthy, yet they aggressively target vulnerable groups.
ATN lobbies against tobacco use because tobacco businesses use lawyers, lobbyists and public relations firms to undermine tobacco control. “They now use strategies perfected in developed markets to addict new smokers in emerging markets,” said the ATN report. Currently Botswana laws allow smoking at public areas such as; restaurants, where there is a selected area for the smokers to enable them to keep away from the non-smokers.
ATN advocates that smoking should be totally banned at both enclosed and outdoor public places. The Control of Smoking Act 65:04 (Sub section, 3-12), prohibits smoking in places like; public places and workplaces. It also encourages ‘Duty of person to protect other persons from tobacco smoke, thus everyone who smokes shall, while smoking take all reasonable measures to ensure that other persons who do not smoke or do not wish to smoke are protected from exposure to tobacco smoke’.Pregnant women and lactating mothers are also urged to keep away from tobacco to protect the unborn or lactating child from exposure to tobacco smoke by avoiding smoking and exposure to second-hand smoke’.
World Health Organisation (WHO) has recently shown that in restaurants, second-hand smoke levels are twice as high as in other work places without smoke bans.