Prohibition of the sale and supply of single-use vapes: Equality Impact Assessment – Results

Equalities Impact Assessment (EQIA) results for the proposed prohibition on the sale and supply of single-use vapes in Scotland.

Recommendations and Conclusion

58. The evidence collated indicates that the proposal is not likely to have significant adverse impacts on the majority of those with protected characteristics.

59. However, it has been identified that disabled and older individuals who currently use single-use vapes may be impacted more than others. Individuals from the groups who have dexterity or visual impairments, in particular, are more likely to experience negative impacts from the proposal.

60. Following wider internal Scottish Government consultation and engagement with relevant external organisations, there is not sufficient evidence to amend the proposal at this time. Alternatives to single-use vapes are widely available, including reusable vapes as well as nicotine patches and gum for smoking cessation purposes. The latter options are available through prescription for current cigarette smokers who are trying to stop.

61. Individuals wishing to stop smoking will remain able to seek advice and support from existing organisations and support services. This includes Quit Your Way Scotland[48] and NHS services[49] such as local pharmacies. Local specialist ‘stop smoking services’ commonly help in hospitals, GP surgeries and local community centres.

62. It is considered there is a sufficient notice and transition period prior to the implementation of the regulations, due 1 April 2025, to allow those using single-use vapes to adjust to reusable alternatives.

63. This EQIA has been undertaken using the data and evidence available and gathered to date. In line with best practice, any new evidence will be considered in terms of impact on those with protected characteristics as it emerges.

64. Several evidence gaps were noted in the interim EQIA. The consultation period was used as an opportunity to further engage with stakeholders on these areas. Responses received did not offer any new evidence to suggest additional impacts. However, most responses supported the initial analysis that disabled and older individuals who currently use single-use vapes may be impacted more than others.

65. Reponses to the consultation suggested that in line with Scottish Government plans, the potential impacts on these groups should be monitored after the policy is enacted.

66. The Scottish Government remains open to new evidence that the proposal could be discriminatory to those with protected characteristics. This will be considered as the monitoring and evaluation of the policy impacts are developed.

67. This EQIA has been updated following the public consultation to reflect on responses and new insights provided.

68. The Scottish Government will consider an appropriate and proportionate post-implementation monitoring approach for the policy to evaluate impacts.



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