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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-02620: Gordon Lindhurst (Lothian)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 13 September 2016

To ask the Scottish Government what information it has regarding how many current and former prisoners have smoke-related illnesses, and how this compares with the rest of the general population.

Answered by: Shona Robison 26 September 2016

Information about smoking illness among prisoners and former prisoners is not held centrally so cannot be compared to illness rates in the rest of the general population. Smoking rates are however significantly higher amongst prisoners (72%) compared to the general population (22%) and the consequence of this will be higher rates of smoking related disease in prisoners and former prisoners.

In line with the Scottish Government’s Tobacco Control Strategy for Scotland, the Scottish Prison Service are working in partnership with government colleagues and local NHS boards to develop plans for indoor smoke-free prison facilities. The Cabinet Secretary for Justice, Michael Matheson, has accepted the recommendations of the National Tobacco Strategy Workstream that all Scottish prisons should be smoke-free within a timescale of up to five years.