The National Campaign "Youth Free from Smoking" in Ukraine, following a recent monitoring of restaurants and cafes in Kyiv, Lutsk, Kherson and Dnipro, has announced an increasing number of violations of anti-tobacco legislation and a weak response to it by the State Service of Ukraine on Food Safety and Consumer Protection.
"We monitored whether it is allowed in coffee houses and restaurants to smoke cigarettes, hookahs, electronic cigarettes or tobacco heating devices (IQOS, glo)," the campaign coordinator Oleh Slabospytsky said, commenting on the main task of the monitoring at the presentation of its results in Kyiv on Thursday.
According to him, about 80 restaurants and coffee houses were seen in violation of anti-tobacco legislation, but only the State Service on Food Safety and Consumer Protection in Kyiv showed a relatively high level of response to information about such facts. In particular, according to the results of monitoring, 12 out of 15 network establishments and hookah bars in Kyiv, which activists complained about, were fined.
At the same time, in Dnipro, according to campaign participants, the authority was able to properly check and prosecute only seven out of 37 violators, and in Lutsk, fines were imposed on half of 10 establishments complained of.
According to the presentation, in 20 establishments in Kherson, smoking of one or several types of tobacco products is allowed: in 15 establishments – smoking hookahs, in 19 – electronic cigarettes and six – cigarettes, while nine of them were fined.
Speaking about other violations in trade in tobacco products, activists cited the example of Dnipro, where in 62% of cases there is one or more points of sale of tobacco products within a five-minute walk from 50 checked schools.
In addition, in 13 out of 31 checked outlets of tobacco products sales, tobacco advertising was present before entering them, almost all of the surveyed outlets (28 out of 31) were engaged in displaying tobacco products, including in 11 cases such displays were at the eye level of children (1 meter).
According to the study, in these cities (Kyiv, Lutsk, Kherson and Dnipro), almost half of tobacco products are sold through supermarkets, 35.5% are sold in kiosks, and 16.1% in small grocery stores.
The activists also call the adoption of a law on a complete ban on smoking in public places (No. 4358) and other toughening in relation to smoking and tobacco products as ways to improve the situation.