HEALTH ministers have called for smoking to be banned on terraces and outdoor restaurant seating in Spain.
The Ministry of Health wants the current law to be extended to include outdoor hospitality.
Ministers also want legislation banning smoking in the grounds of schools, hospitals and in playgrounds to come into force permanently.
The prohibition of smoking on terraces and in entrances to public buildings was introduced by most autonomous communities as part of the COVID-19 regulations.
Health experts believe that the expulsion of tobacco smoke increases the possibility of contracting the virus.
But hospitality workers have said extending the ban would be hugely disproportionate and unfair.
The move has the backing of minister Carolina Darias who said it would de-normalise smoking and protect people from the damaging effects of second-hand smoke.
Darias said it was also important to extend the ban to football stadiums where young people and families with children gathered.
She made it very clear that she wanted to push through the reform, adding ‘it is prepared’ and will include measures such as ‘the expansion of smoke-free spaces, the equalisation of regulation of tobacco and the introduction of plain packaging’.
At the moment, the reform is just a draft and will have to be debated before it can come into force.