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Complainant Name:
Ms Belinda Cunnison

Clauses Noted: 1

Publication: Berwickshire News


Ms Belinda Cunnison, a member of the group ‘Freedom to Choose (Scotland)', complained under Clause 1 (Accuracy) of the Editors' Code of Practice about an article which reported NHS Borders' new outdoor smoking restrictions. The complainant was concerned that the newspaper had inaccurately stated that failure to comply with the policy was a criminal offence and that there would be harsh penalties for those who did not comply.


The complaint was resolved when the PCC negotiated the following online clarification with a link to the original report:

In an article published on January 12 about a new NHS Borders smoking policy we incorrectly stated that "failure to comply with the policy is a criminal offence". The sentence should have stated that "failure to comply with the law is a criminal offence". We also stated that there would be "harsh penalties" for those who don't comply with the policy. We accept that this is also misleading and apologise for the error.

Date Published: 30/05/2012

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