Study to analyse the impacts of a possible European Union initiative to protect workers from exposure to environmental tobacco smoke in the workplace

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Call for evidence

ICF GHK has been retained by the European Commission to provide analytical services to examine a possible European initiative to protect workers in the European Union (EU) from environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) in the workplace. Thisletter provides more information about the assignment.

The study will examine the likely costs and benefits of four main options:

  1. No further action at European level in the field of worker protection from ETS.
  2. Non-binding action at European level.
  3. Binding legislation at European level. There are sub-options within this - including the possibility of a ‘residential premises’ exemption (e.g. for prisons and residential care homes) and a ‘smoking area’ exemption (where ventilated smoking facilities could be installed).
  4. Binding legislation at European level. There are sub-options within this - including the possibility of a ‘residential premises’ exemption (e.g. for prisons and residential care homes) and a ‘smoking area’ exemption (where ventilated smoking facilities could be installed).
  5. Binding legislation, combined with non-binding action.

The study covers all EU Member States and members of the European Free Trade Association.

What evidence is required?

In order to assess the above options, the study requires evidence on a series of specific issues. We are therefore asking organisations to submit evidence on the following topics:

a) Compliance with existing legislation

The study requires evidence on the extent of compliance with national legislation. This might come from monitoring reports, evidence on fines imposed, or academic research.

b) Number of workers exposed to ETS in the workplace

The study requires evidence on the number of workers who are currently exposed to ETS in the workplace. Where possible, this number should be disaggregated by sector, employer size, worker demographics, etc.

c) Use of ‘segregation measures’

Legislation in some countries allows employers to install smoking rooms / booths. Where this is the case, the study requires evidence on the extent to which employers have opted to install these facilities, or whether they ban smoking in the workplace instead.

The study also needs evidence on the reasons for the use or non-use of segregation measures. For example, where employers do not install segregation measures but ban workplace smoking, why is this?

d) Cost of segregation measures

Particularly where there are specific ventilation requirements, the study requires information on:

  • Installation costs;
  • Ongoing / maintenance costs; and,
  • The amount of space occupied by rooms / booths.

e) Monitoring / effectiveness of segregation measures

The study requires evidence on how the performance of segregation measures is monitored and whether they meet the standards set by legislation.

f) Number of businesses that are exempt from the legislation

In some countries, certain types of businesses (small bars, for example) are exempt from the legislation; they can decide if they want to allow smoking in the workplace. Where the legislation allows for this, the study needs to know:

  • The number of businesses that are exempt from legislation.
  • The number of these businesses that opt to allow smoking in the workplace.
  • The size of these businesses (how many are Small and Medium-sized Enterprises).
  • The number of workers this affects.

How should evidence be submitted? What is the deadline?

Evidence should be emailed to: ETS.ImpactAssessment@ghkint.com

The deadline for submissions to the study is 30th September 2013.

You can also contact ICF GHK on the above address should you have any further questions. Many thanks in advance for your contribution to this research.