About Chantler

The impression was put about that Chantler was ‘independent’ and thus a suitable person to conduct the enquiry into PP. He was said to be a simple paediatrician, although, I suppose, an expert one. It is beginning to look as though Chantler is anything but ‘neutral’.

Guido Fawkes has dug out some interesting facts about Mr Chantler:


Just how neutral is Maria Miller’s smokescreen and plain package advocate Sir Cyril Chantler? Earlier he would have had us believe he is just a simple Consultant Paediatrician, yet he holds a Parliamentary staff pass from Baroness Cumberlege, the former Junior Health Minister, who in 1992 called for a complete phase out on the sale of cigarettes in the UK by 2020:

“The 25 phase-out would require sharp reductions in the numbers of young people who take up smokers “redoubling education efforts will go a long way to that end,” said Lady Cumberlege “Ultimately, I suppose some form of prescription dispensing could be envisioned to ‘accommodate’ the last aged addicted smokers in the realm,” she said.”

If you follow the ‘staff pass’ link, you find this:

Baroness Cumberlege.

Staff…………………….. Other relevant gainful occupation or benefit.

Sir Cyril Chantler…… Chairman, UCL Partners Academic Health Science Partnership; Non-executive Director, By the Bridge (fostering agency); Chairman, Clinical Audit Committee NHS England; Occasional inquiries or reviews on NHS matters.

When the enquiry into PP was announced, I wondered, in my simplistic way, how the relevant junior minister would have decided who would conduct it. Would she stick a pin in a list of consultants in the telephone directory? Would she ring around and see who might be available? Erm… Rather obviously, she did not chose him. The Zealots chose him, and they did so knowing full well of his contacts with anti-tobacco.

In view if that, it is quite surprising that his report was only slightly in favour of PP, in the sense of “Might as well give it a go – it just might work” That, to me, suggests that his ‘evidence’ was so trivial that even he, a convinced anti-tobacco zealot, could not find anything significant about it.

There is a significant point here, should tobacco companies go to court about PP. As I understand it, EU rules about free trade can only be overturned on health grounds, and I would assume that there has to be some significance in the health grounds. You would think that there would have to be some ‘directness’ also, rather than convoluted possibilities of possibilities.

I can’t see tobacco companies NOT taking this to the courts. The Australian court judgement has little to do with EU trade agreements and directives. But at what point will they do so? I think that there have been precedents where legal action has been taken at the proposal stage of such regulations. That is, the tobacco companies would not have to wait until a law has been passed. I don’t think the fact that parliament passed a proposal that the government could introduce PP when it wanted to is equivalent to actually doing so. I don’t think the enabling bill even mentioned EU complexities.

I suppose that it will be interesting to see what happens.



4 Responses to “About Chantler”

  1. beobrigitte Says:

    Indeed, it will be interesting to see what happens.

    There is a significant point here, should tobacco companies go to court about PP.

    I’d rephrase this sentence as a question. Tobacco companies can achieve more much cheaper and quicker: PULL OUT of PP law countries.

    How many people do the tobacco industry employ? In the EU (don’t know about the States or Australia) the employer also has to contribute to each employee’s health cover + pension; which is partially reclaimable via tax cuts.

    How many jobs does tobacco control provide?

    • Junican Says:

      In the UK, it is about 60,000 employees. I don’t think that comparing Tob control jobs is equivalent. Those jobs are anti-productive. They seek to destroy the actual productive jobs in industry.
      Philip Morris have actually decided to close their facility in Australia and moved operations to South Korea. It cannot have been large since it employed only 160 people. It might well have been more of a finishing facility than a production one. But the question now arise as to who will collect duties? As you know, it is manufacturers who add duty to tobacco products as the products emerge from the factories. What was a cheap way of collecting taxes, when the calculations etc were done by big companies, will now become a much more demanding and arduous task when dealing with many importers and distributors.
      By the way, PM has also closed its facility in Holland.

      • beobrigitte Says:

        WHAT jobs does tobacco control EXACTLY provide? Is is minimum wage jobs for being internet trolls? Do they produce something the public LIKES? How much LONG TERM EMPLOYMENT can tobacco control provide?

        How much LONG TERM EMPLOYMENT can the tobacco industry provide?

      • Junican Says:

        Those are the questions Governments should be asking. In any case, I see TC as a scourge which is destroying swaths of jobs, not only in the tobacco industry but everywhere.

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