Smok­ers stub out

Isis Town and Country - - Kolan News -

A PAR­LIA­MEN­TARY Com­mit­tee has rec­om­mended the LNP’s Pri­vate Mem­ber’s Bill, aimed at dis­cour­ag­ing first-time smok­ers from light­ing up, putting an end to pas­sive smok­ing and incentivising smok­ers to quit, should be passed.

Shadow Health Min­is­ter Mark McAr­dle said the com­mit­tee’s rec­om­men­da­tion re­in­forced the LNP’s ef­forts to re­duce the rate of smok­ing among Queens­lan­ders.

“The bill was in­tro­duced in July to help smok­ers stub out the habit and stop young peo­ple from tak­ing up smok­ing in the first place,” Mr McAr­dle said.

A ban on cig­a­rettes sold at ‘pop-up’ shops and smok­ing bans within five me­tres of Queens­land Gov­ern­ment build­ings, at pub­lic trans­port stops and sta­tions, pedes­trian malls, and at swim­ming pools and skate parks all form part of the bill.

“We hope the Palaszczuk La­bor Gov­ern­ment sup­ports the rec­om­men­da­tion of the com­mit­tee and votes to pass the LNP’s bill in Par­lia­ment,” he said.

With half of all long-term smok­ers dy­ing pre­ma­turely, the Par­lia­ment must act de­ci­sively.

“We can­not af­ford for this to be­come an­other one of the La­bor Gov­ern­ment’s re­views,” he said.

Mr McAr­dle said the bill built upon the work done by the LNP in gov­ern­ment to re­duce the num­ber of young peo­ple tak­ing up smok­ing.

“In gov­ern­ment the LNP in­tro­duced some of the tough­est laws to pro­tect the pub­lic, in­clud­ing a ban on smok­ing on or within five me­tres of health fa­cil­i­ties and school grounds,” he said.

“Of­fi­cials be­lieve more can be done to en­cour­age young Queens­lan­ders to not ever take up the habit, which is why we in­tro­duced this lat­est bill.

“The LNP re­mains the only party with a plan and de­spite be­ing in Op­po­si­tion, con­tin­ues to de­liver so­lu­tions for a bet­ter, safer and health­ier Queens­land,” he said.

Fast facts

Smok­ing ac­counts for 1 in 7 deaths in Queens­land

Cur­rent smok­ers will die an av­er­age of 10 years ear­lier than non-smok­ers, with mor­tal­ity rates in­creas­ing sub­stan­tially with the in­creased in­ten­sity of smok­ing.

Tobacco smok­ing is the lead­ing cause of pre­ventable death and dis­ease, and health in­equal­ity in Queens­land.

PHOTO: MAX FLEET

HEALTH PUSH: The Pri­vate Mem­ber’s Bill aims to re­duce the rate of smok­ing among Queens­lan­ders.

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