Pledge from health chiefs and council leaders on action to further cut smoking levels

November 29 2015

NEW moves are being made to cut the number of smokers in South Gloucestershire.

NEW moves are being made to cut the number of smokers in South Gloucestershire.

A tobacco control scheme, youth prevention programme and a campaign to reduce smoking in pregnancy are just some of the latest steps being taken to encourage more smokers to give up.

Now the director of public health in the district, Professor Mark Pietroni, and South Gloucestershire Council leader, Matthew Riddle, have also pledged support to a national project to help protect people from preventable diseases such as lung cancer.

The local authority declaration on tobacco control commits the council to specific actions to reduce smoking prevalence and health inequalities among local communities. 

Professor Pietroni said it was necessary to promote a shift in social attitudes so that choosing not to smoke was encouraged.

He said: “It’s really important that we continue to reduce the attractiveness of tobacco, particularly to young people, and that everyone plays their part to protect children from the harm of second-hand smoke.

“We are also working to stop the trade in illegal tobacco sales and we are involved in the national second-hand smoke campaign which highlights the hidden dangers that smoking in homes and cars can cause to children’s health.”

Councillor Riddle said: “In signing this declaration we can continue to build on the positive work we are already doing locally to inform people about the serious damage smoking can cause.”

There are currently nearly 45,000 smokers in South Gloucestershire - 16.7 per cent of the area’s population – and Yate is among places in the district that runs regular Smokefree sessions to help people quit the habit. Details are available by visiting www.southglos.gov.uk/smokefree

Every year in England alone, more than 80,000 people die from smoking related disease.

Some 17,000 under-fives are also admitted to hospital across the country annually as a result of passive smoking and Cancer Research UK estimates that 430 children in England start smoking every day.