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Home > Joint Committee on Health and Children debate. Public Health (Standardised Packaging of Tobacco) Bill 2013: discussion (resumed).

[Oireachtas] Joint Committee on Health and Children debate. Public Health (Standardised Packaging of Tobacco) Bill 2013: discussion (resumed). (06 Feb 2014)

URL: https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/debates/debate/joint_...


Chairman: I thank everybody for attending this morning. As we are in public session I remind members, witnesses and those in the Gallery that mobile phones should be turned off or be in flight mode for the duration of the meeting as they interfere with the broadcasting equipment. As members are aware, the general scheme of the public health (standardised packaging of tobacco) Bill was referred to the joint committee for consideration before Christmas. Before the Christmas recess, the Minister, Deputy Reilly, and the Chief Medical Officer made a presentation to the joint committee by way of introduction to this important legislation. Last week, we heard from a wide variety of groups, as well as the Revenue Commissioners, An Garda Síochána and the HSE. This morning, we are continuing with a fourth meeting in the series that will convene over the next couple of weeks, culminating next week in considering the heads of the Bill. Today we will hear of the potential effects of legislation from a public health policy viewpoint. I welcome all our witnesses this morning from the Irish Medical Organisation, the Irish Thoracic Society, the Institute of Public Health in Ireland, the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, the TobaccoFree Research Institute of Ireland and St. James's Hospital. I will introduce the witnesses individually as we speak to them. 

Witnesses are protected by absolute privilege in respect of the evidence they give to the committee. However, if they are directed by the committee to cease giving evidence on a particular matter and continue to do so, they are entitled thereafter only to qualified privilege in respect of their evidence. They are directed that only evidence connected with the subject matter of these proceedings is to be given and are asked to respect the parliamentary practice to the effect that, where possible, they should not criticise or make charges against a person or an entity by name or in such a way as to make him, her or it identifiable. I remind members of the long-standing ruling and parliamentary practice that they should not comment on, criticise or make charges against a person outside the Houses or an official by name or in such a way as to make him or her identifiable.
 
I welcome Dr. Matthew Sadlier, president of the Irish Medical Organisation, and Ms Vanessa Hetherington, who is in the Gallery. I thank her for her co-operation for the meeting……
 
[For the full debate, click here. For the resumed debate on the 13th of February click on the related link below]

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