Author: Clare Furlonger

Plastic With Purpose

[About the author: Clare Furlonger is Marketing and Communications Manager for LeapFrog Investments. Clare was a student on the City, University of London Writing for Business short course in Oct-Dec 2018, and wrote this blog as part of a homework/in-class exercise on that course.]

If I were to light a cigarette in the central London office where I work, would it be ok?

It’d be pretty absurd right? I mean for one, I don’t smoke. But more to the point, it’s illegal. And more than that, it’s really socially unacceptable. We know the harmful effects smoking and second-hand smoke have on our health. And because of this, employers have a responsibility to prevent employees from smoking at work.

But this wasn’t always the case. 20 years ago, banning smoking in the workplace was considered a ‘radical’ idea, because smoking was everywhere. You could smoke not only in offices but in schools, in restaurants, on planes, in shops, in cinemas, in bars and pubs, in hospitals, on buses and trains, everywhere. It was normal. Just as using plastic is normal. It’s in all the places I just mentioned. We don’t even realise, because we are so conditioned to it surrounding us.

Don’t get me wrong, plastic is an incredible invention that has revolutionised the world and how we live. It has its purpose. But like smoking, plastic is harmful. To our health, economies, and the environment.