Labour Research September 2017

Law Queries


Q. Is vaping at work lawful?

A. Vaping is very unlikely to fall under the statutory smoking ban for enclosed workplaces and so may be permissible at work. However, some employers have policies in place which ban vaping at work. The TUC believes that, as the long-term risks of e-cigarettes are unknown, employers could ban their use under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations.

Employers have a duty to assess workplace risks to employees and put in place protective and preventative measures. So employers should conduct risk assessments when considering the use of e-cigarettes at work.

The TUC recommends that unions adopt as their negotiating position with employers that vaping is subject to the same restrictions as the use of tobacco in the workplace. For example, that vaping should not take place indoors. Unions may consider asking for a separate area for vapers and smokers in order that vapers are not exposed to smoke from traditional cigarettes.

In 2016, Public Health England published guidance on the use of e-cigarettes in public places.