The consumption of tobacco is responsible every year in Spain for the death of more than 50,000 people, who for the most part began to smoke long before reaching the age of 18 years old. As the first cause of preventable death in our country, it represents an obstacle to the right to health and life of Spaniards, a right recognized in numerous human rights treaties ratified by the Spanish Government, among others the Convention on the Children’s Rights, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, which in its Article 12 states that countries must respect and protect the “right of all people to enjoy the highest level achievable physical and mental health “.

According to the available scientific evidence, these are the main measures that the public authorities should adopt in Spain:
1) related to article 6 of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control of the World Health Organization 2003 (FCTC):
– equating upwards the taxation of all tobacco products;
– equating taxation also with products related to nicotine-containing tobacco and novel tobacco products;
– increase the fiscal pressure of all tobacco products, making it similar to that of the most developed countries in our environment, in order to reduce their accessibility to the most vulnerable populations, especially minors;
2) related to Article 8 of the FCTC:
– require compliance with current legislation on consumption in closed or quasi-closed public places (such as terraces, patios or transit areas in shopping centers);
– apply the current regulation on smoke-free spaces, to all related products (electronic cigarettes and herbal products for smoking). All this with the double objective of, on the one hand, avoiding the passive toxicity that these cause, and on the other, achieving the denormalization of their consumption in public places;
– prohibit smoking in any type of vehicle to avoid exposure to smoke of all passengers, especially minors, for reasons of health and road safety;
– Extend the current legislation according to the normative recommendations and guidelines of the World Health Organization on the protection of environmental tobacco smoke through: 1) the elimination of ambiguities (definition and delimitation of outdoor space, exceptions in enclosed spaces) , etc.); 2) the expansion of smoke-free environments in outdoor spaces (sports and entertainment facilities, stops and platforms of means of transport, beaches and other natural spaces, communal swimming pools); and 3) the explicit implication of the security bodies -local, autonomous and state- in the control of the application of the Law in all areas;
– promote smoke-free homes and raise awareness among the population, as it is currently the main place of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke, responsible for morbidity and mortality in adults and children;
3) related to Article 11 of the FCTC:
– introduce neutral packaging, as have several countries in our environment, in order to reduce the attractiveness of the product to minors and increase their perception of risk;
4) related to Article 12 of the FCTC:
– Carry out segmented campaigns to the different profiles of the population that allow them to acquire an adequate perception of risk on tobacco consumption. In this sense, campaigns such as “each cigarette hurts you” are recommended, an initiative that has demonstrated its effectiveness in multiple countries of different characteristics;
5) related to article 14 of the FCTC:
– facilitate the access of the smoker population to health professionals trained in the approach to tobacco consumption and in the treatment of smoking;
– finance those clinical, behavioral and pharmacological interventions that have shown effectiveness and safety in the treatment of smoking;
6) related to other FCTC articles:
– reinforce and equalize the regulation on advertising, promotion and sponsorship of tobacco products, to related products, including also the devices used for their consumption (such as pipes, water pipes, IQOS, etc.) ( Article 13 of the FCTC);
– eliminate advertising of tobacco and related products at points of sale (Article 13 of the FCTC);
– reinforce the ban on the sale of minors, also addressing issues related to products distributed through the internet (Article 16 of the FCTC).

Read the full text of DECLARACIÓN DE MADRID 2018 (ENGLISH)