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UK Prisoners Spend Millions on E-cigarettes

UK Prisoners Spend Millions on E-cigarettes 

A recent report from has revealed that UK prisoners are spending more than £7 million ($8.5 million) per year on e-cigarettes. This amount has been increasing every year since 2019, when a smoking ban was implemented by the government across closed jails in England and Wales. The figures from the previous financial year show that inmates spent £7,655,766 on vapes and £7,930 on e-cigarettes, which is the highest amount spent on such products over a three-year period.

The current period up to January has seen prisoners spend £6,730,176 of their own money on vapes alone, indicating that the trend is not likely to slow down any time soon. The data released by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) identifies British American Tobacco (BAT) and Manchester-based Supreme Imports Ltd. as the main suppliers of e-cigarettes in prisons.

It is worth noting that the use of e-cigarettes and vaping products has been on the rise globally in recent years, and the prison population is no exception. However, the rise in spending on these products that gets into the hands of UK prisoners is partly due to the smoking ban that was implemented in 2019. This ban was put in place to improve the health of inmates and staff and to reduce the risk of fires caused by smoking.

Although e-cigarettes are considered a less harmful alternative to smoking, concerns have been raised about the possible risks associated with vaping, particularly when it comes to secondhand exposure to aerosolized particles. Moreover, the long-term health effects of e-cigarette use are still largely unknown.

Despite these concerns, many experts agree that vaping is a useful tool for smokers who are trying to quit. In prisons, where access to traditional smoking cessation tools such as nicotine replacement therapy is limited, e-cigarettes may provide an effective alternative.

However, the increasing amount of money being spent on e-cigarettes in UK prisons highlights the need for better regulation and monitoring of these products. There is a risk that e-cigarettes may become a form of currency in prisons, leading to the creation of black markets and potential security issues.

Overall, while e-cigarettes may offer some benefits to prisoners looking to quit smoking, it is important to ensure that their use is regulated and monitored to prevent any negative consequences.

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