Hackney Council brings anti-smoke prosecution

Hackney Council has carried out its first prosecution of a person for failing to prevent smoking on his premises. The Council’s Environmental Health Team prosecuted Mr Seydi Celik after they received complaints that smoking was being allowed at a Turkish social club at 228 Morning Lane, E8.

Mr Celik, who failed to attend the hearing at Thames Magistrates’ Court, was found guilty on 18 March of failing to prevent smoking at his premises and fined £1750 including costs. He was given 28 days to pay the fine.

The prosecution follows numerous visits to the club and considerable efforts to work with Mr Celik to ensure the premises were kept smoke free, but these attempts were unsuccessful. Mr Celik continued to permit people to smoke inside the building.

Mr Celik was sent a final written warning, before environmental health officers visited the social club on 21 May 2008. There were two men smoking inside. The decision was taken to prosecute under the smoke free laws introduced in July 2007. The laws are designed to protect workers from the harmful effects of second hand smoke and apply to all workplaces including all types of social clubs.

Cllr Alan Laing, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “People have the right to work in a smoke free environment. The council has worked with Hackney businesses to help them be smoke free and we have high levels of compliance. However, our officers carry out regular checks and we will prosecute business owners and managers who fail to keep their premises smoke free.“

For more information and guidance on the smoke free laws, available in several languages, please contact Hackney Environmental Health Team on 020 8356 4911. For information on stop smoking services available in City and Hackney please contact Frances Schmocker on 020 7683 4352