Nick Clegg's fury at plan to bribe pregnant Northern Ireland smokers with shopping vouchers
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has spoken out against proposals to offer pregnant women in Northern Ireland shopping vouchers to give up smoking.
Researchers at the universities of Glasgow and Stirling found that 23% of mothers-to-be offered £400 in online shopping vouchers to stop smoking during their pregnancy succeeded in quitting, compared to just 9% taking part in a normal NHS programme.
They now want to roll out the programme. But Mr Clegg said he was "perturbed" at the idea that the NHS could be asked effectively to "bribe" mothers to look after their babies' health.
"Where does this end?" he said. "Do we then give people cash in hand to provide their children with a healthy, regular meal?"