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Plastic straws to be banned in the UK from April 2020

Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 2,487Administrator Scope community team
edited May 28 in Disability news
This certainly is not the first time we have seen the controversial topic of plastic straws in the media. However, today it has been announced that plastic straws and drink stirrers, and cotton buds with plastic stems will be banned from sale and use in England from next April.

Image result for straws

An article from The Guardian has reassured disabled readers:
The only exceptions to the new rule will be for people with a medical need or disability, for whom plastic straws and other materials will be available upon request. [...] Registered pharmacies will be permitted to sell plastic straws, over the counter or online, but restaurants, pubs and other catering establishments will not be allowed to display plastic straws or provide them automatically.

Despite things being put in place, this still will make it a lot harder to gain access to plastic straws and potential leave disabled people paying higher prices for the product.

What are your thoughts? Is this enough and will you be affected by the straw ban?

Online Community Officer


  • Ami2301Ami2301 Posts: 4,986Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Why are they banning straws? Sorry I've not read about this before
    You're a fighter. Look at everything you've overcome. Don't give up now!
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 2,487Administrator Scope community team
    That's okay @Ami2301! It's to reduce plastic waste.
    Online Community Officer
  • Ami2301Ami2301 Posts: 4,986Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    But straws help people...there are plenty of other plastic items which are not useful which can be banned so why the one thing that actually helps. 🤔
    You're a fighter. Look at everything you've overcome. Don't give up now!
  • Adrian_ScopeAdrian_Scope Posts: 1,873Administrator Scope community team

    Hello all, we’ve had a request from a newspaper who are interested in speaking to someone about the impact the straw ban will be having on them. 

    Obviously in some cases, the ban will be relaxed, but the journalist is especially keen to get a feel for how important these issues are to some. 

    Ideally you'd be available to answer some questions tomorrow afternoon, which is obviously quite short notice, so if you'd be willing to speak to the journalist, please get in touch with Bernie ([email protected]) and she'll be happy to brief you on what'll be involved.

    Senior Community Officer
  • fab66fab66 Posts: 7Member Listener
    I do not use a drinking cup but we had paper straws when I was younger and that decomposes so should I believe are biodegradable. So, what’s the fuss.
    I’m sure if kids are that fussy now then it would help to deter them drink less fizz or oversugared milkshakes.
    i make my own and whizz the fruit up too with skimmed milk put them in a drink cup in fridge to stay nice and cold.
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Posts: 2,487Administrator Scope community team
    edited May 28
    Hi @fab66, some people's disability causes the muscles in their mouth to not work properly or do not have the ability to hold a cup. As a result, using a plastic straw can enable then to drink independently and safely. Alternatives, like a paper straw, can be harder to use as they don't hold the shape. Hope this helps :)
    Online Community Officer
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Posts: 10,875Community champion Disability Gamechanger
    Paper straws are nothing more than extremely annoying because they don't hold their shape long enough to drink your drink. Thank fully i don't have a disability that means i need to use a straw but for those that do i can only imagine it will become a complete nightmare.
  • DavidJDavidJ Posts: 45Member Courageous
    Whoa whoa folks .
    Its like every other ban . I too am disabled and have problems drinking ,but rather than get angry I stopped using plastic straws after seeing a film of that poor turtle with a plastic straw up its nose !!! That couldve been one of mine ! and now I have a supply of paper ones . True they don’t last long but that’s the idea !! They biodegrade !!
    As a disabled person I went and bought from a Motability/Disabilty shop shop a drinking vessel with a plastic straw attached . It’s washable and reusable hundreds of times .
    Also I am at the age where once apon  a time there wasn’t such a thing as a plastic straw .
    So I have adapted :-Paper straws for grandkids and a reusable plastic one for me .
    Still saving the planet one straw at a time 
    So we aren’t doomed guys and gals we just adapt 
    We can still buy what is best for us to use especially if you use the correct shop. As for drinking outside ,easy .I take my own straw . .
    Have a great weekend .
  • DavidJDavidJ Posts: 45Member Courageous
    PS There are metal straws available too .A friend uses them (carefully) for warm liquids like soup .
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