Vaping MPs Have Been Forced To Join Smokers Out In The Cold

    E-cigarettes are now limited to "designated outdoor areas" – despite MPs' calls to let people vape in their offices.

    House of Commons officials have banned MPs from puffing on e-cigarettes inside parliament.

    Yui Mok / PA Wire

    BuzzFeed News reported in February how a group of MPs recommended that politicians should be allowed to vape indoors.

    The Commons Administration Committee proposed that e-cigarettes should be allowed in MPs' offices, part of the Portcullis House building and inside Strangers' bar – parliament's main watering hole.

    But an official notice recently emailed to politicians and staff, and seen by BuzzFeed News, declares that "the use of electronic cigarettes ("e-cigarettes") is now prohibited across the Parliament Estate except for designated outdoor areas".

    The House of Commons Commission, chaired by Speaker John Bercow, made the ruling. It was backed by the House of Lords House Committee. The move brings parliament into line with most British offices where vaping is banned.

    It means that vaping MPs will now have to huddle in the cold to enjoy their e-cigarettes.

    Two special "vaping areas" have been set up in courtyards in the Commons and Lords.

    The new rules are a blow to vaping MPs who were hoping for a cheeky puff in the comfort of their own offices.

    Politicians are also asked to refrain from charging their e-cigarettes in parliament. The notice warns: "Some e-cigarette chargers have been linked to fires."

    A parliamentary spokesman explained: "The Commons and Lords administrations have each designated an outdoor area for the use of e-cigarettes. E-cigarettes can also be used in the designated outdoor smoking areas."

    Emily Ashton is a senior political correspondent for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

    Contact Emily Ashton at emily.ashton@buzzfeed.com.

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