BRADFORD Council is being urged to become “vape user friendly” by members of the council’s Conservative group.

The call comes on the back of research published by Public Health England and the Royal College of Physicians surrounding e-cigarettes.

The reports conclude that using e-cigarettes, or vaping, is at least 95 per cent safer than smoking tobacco, and there is no risk whatsoever to non-smokers from exposure to vaping.

The report states: “Although it is not possible to estimate the long-term health risks associated with e-cigarettes precisely, the available data suggest that they are unlikely to exceed five per cent of those associated with smoked tobacco products, and may well be substantially lower than this figure.”

Councillor Simon Cooke, leader of the Conservative Group on Bradford Council and a former smoker himself, called on the council to change its rules regarding the use of e-cigarettes.

He said: “Despite this evidence, the Council and many other bodies persist with policies that ban vaping and it is time this changed.

“Thousands of Bradford residents have successfully stopped smoking using e-cigarettes and many others have improved their health by reducing the amount of tobacco they smoke.

“It is wrong to treat these people in the same way as smokers and, worse, these bans act to discourage people from switching to safer vaping. I think it’s time the Council permitted staff to use e-cigarettes, and allowed the public to vape in Council premises such as the markets and leisure facilities.

“We should also be encouraging other public and private organisations to do likewise, in the interests of promoting public health.”

A spokesman for Bradford Council said: “E-cigarettes are a relatively new phenomenon and the advice on their use has changed from Public Health England in recent months.

“We are currently reviewing our HR policy in relation to e-cigarettes and their use on council premises to ensure a sensible policy in line with national guidelines.

“Anyone wanting to use the service and quit smoking can phone 01274 437700.

“The Council’s stop smoking service offers an e-cigarette friendly service, delivering effective and free support across the district to residents as part of our aim to create a smoke free generation within the next ten years."