We are advised by the Environmental Health Service of the HSE that they have given very clear and detailed instructions to their EHO’s to enforce a greater level of compliance regarding the visibility of tobacco products and tobacco-related signage.
Tobacco products are not only cigarettes, they are also Cigarette papers, filters and tips. The Public Health (Tobacco) Act 2002 expressly prohibits the open display of ALL tobacco products, they need to be kept out of sight of the public.
The EHO will also take a negative view of retailers that have leaflets or posters on display that show the price of individual tobacco products, these are seen as a promotional or advertising device, and may lead to a prosecution for the store (not the tobacco company that put the poster up on the gantry!).
Over the next few months, the EHO’s will continue with Test Purchasing and will certainly bring criminal charges against the store owner, and quite possibly also against the sales assistant if they sell any tobacco products to a person under the age of 18.
We are aware of a Test Purchase that involved a pack of cigarette papers in a Dunnes last year, it is not necessarily cigarettes or RYO that is requested.
ALWAYS seek photo identity in line with your stores policy, and continually remind your staff, including your casual and part-timers, that they risk prosecution (and possible disciplinary action) if they fail to carry out these checks on EACH and EVERY occasion.
Retailer replacement stickers and/or prescribed signage can be obtained by contacting the National Tobacco Control Office on 1800 333100 or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org