ROME - They smoke in the corridors. They smoke in group meetings. They smoke in their offices and they even smoke in committee. Italy's parliamentarians may have voted for the smoking ban, but they have great difficulty in actually observing it. Senators are the most reluctant to comply: there are smokers in all parts of the Senate building.
In the Lower House, there is some embarrassment about lighting up in the Transatlantico hall or the Buvette, the bar. Smokers go out into the courtyard, which Forza Italia's (FI) Ferdinando Adornato has rechristened "Sirchia Court", after the minister for health. Yesterday at Palazzo Montecitorio, several members of the Lower House were puffing away out of doors, despite the freezing cold. But the ban is ignored in group meetings and in personal offices. FI's Giuseppe Romele admits as much. "Smoking still goes on in the groups, and I smoke in my office, but not in committee. We're well-behaved there". Mr Romele voted in favour of the law and says he supports it, but he has appointed himself chairman of an unofficial smokers' committee.
Saturday, January 29, 2005
Smoking Ban in Italy...
The smoking ban in Italy seems to be going relatively smoothly (Deo Gratias!) but it seems that Italian parlimentarians are taking a relaxed attitude: