On Sunday morning, the levelling up secretary announced the prohibition, stating that “anti-social behaviour may damage lives.”
According to Michael Gove, nitrous oxide will be prohibited in the UK as part of initiatives to combat anti-social behaviour.
Speaking on Sky News on Sunday morning, the Levelling Up secretary announced the ban and said that “anti-social behaviour can damage lives.”
The proposals are a component of a plan to reduce anti-social behaviour, which is a major concern in the lead-up to the next election.
The ban, according to Mr. Gove, is necessary to stop public areas from becoming into “drug-taking venues” because laughing gas canisters are a “growing plague.”
On Sunday, he said to Sophy Ridge, “I think anyone who has the opportunity to walk through our parks in our major cities will have seen these little silver canisters, which are examples of people not only destroying public spaces but also using a drug that can have a psychological and neurological effect and one that contributes to anti-social behaviour generally.”
The drug’s classification under categories A, B, or C is currently uncertain.
After earlier confessing to using cocaine “on multiple occasions,” the Cabinet minister has been charged with hypocrisy for imposing the ban.
He was asked whether the plans were hypocritical, to which he replied, “No…because I’ve learnt.
“I’ve discovered that considering drug use to be somewhat acceptable is a mistake, much worse than a mistake.”
According to Lucy Powell of Labour, her party would back the initiative. I believe we both want to see it outlawed since it contributes significantly to littering, she said.
According to the 2016 Psychoactive Substances Act, it is already unlawful to possess nitrous oxide with the purpose to provide it, as noted by journalist Tristan Kirk.
While a Public Spaces Protection Order is in effect, possession may also be illegal under the Anti-social Behavior, Crime and Police Act of 2014, he noted.
Government considering making possession of nitrous oxide illegal.
News reports so far haven’t mentioned that possession *with intent to supply* nitrous oxide is already illegal
There are also already laws – complex ones – to prosecute for possession of nitrous oxide cannisters
— Tristan Kirk (@kirkkorner) March 25, 2023
The government ordered the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs to study the matter, but it came to the conclusion earlier this month that there is “no substantial evidence of linkages between nitrous oxide and anti-social behaviour.” The decision to outlaw laughing gas contradicts this conclusion.
A prohibition would “be inappropriate given the magnitude of damage associated with nitrous oxide and might have substantial unexpected effects,” according to the paper, thus it shouldn’t be implemented.