Cancer Council calls on universities, TAFE, to go smoke free

Cancer Council has called on all Queensland universities, TAFE and training organisations to go entirely smoke free, after QUT announced a ban on smoking today, World No Tobacco Day.

QUT’s Gardens Point and Kelvin Grove campuses will go completely smoke-free from July 1, protecting students, staff and visitors from the harmful dangers of second-hand smoke.

Cancer Council’s call follows Parliamentary Committee support for legislation to prohibit smoking at and near universities, TAFE facilities and registered training organisation campuses.

Cancer Council Queensland spokesperson CEO Professor Jeff Dunn AO congratulated QUT on leading the state with smoke free universities.

“QUT’s smoke free campuses will encourage existing smokers to quit, deter young people from taking up the habit and protect young students from the harmful dangers of second-hand smoke,” Prof Dunn said.

“QUT is following on from Queensland’s introduction of the world’s most progressive smoke free laws, to be introduced this September.

“We must do all we can to stop young people from smoking. This strong step will save lives within our next generation of leaders.

“Today, World No Tobacco Day, we’re calling on other education and training organisations – including universities and TAFE facilities – to put the health of their staff and students first.

“A ban on smoking at and near universities protects visitors, staff and students from second-hand smoke – which kills around one Queenslander a day.

“Cancer Council Queensland stands ready to protect our next generation, and we are calling for even stronger action against smoking in our community.

“We urge all Queenslanders to stand with us for a smoke free future – including the introduction of smoke free education campuses.”

Earlier this month, Cancer Council called for the consideration of a generational phase-out of smoking, banning cigarettes for all children born after 2001.

Around 12 per cent of Queensland adults smoke daily – 50,000 fewer people than in 2014. Research shows the majority of smokers want to quit.

Around 3700 Queenslanders die from a tobacco-related disease each year. About 370 of these deaths are caused by second-hand smoke exposure.

On September 1 2016, new laws will come into effect banning smoking at public transport waiting points, pedestrian malls, aged care facilities, specified national parks and at or near children’s organised sporting events and skate parks in Queensland.

Smokers are urged to call the Quitline on 13 QUIT (13 7848) for help with quitting.

More information about Cancer Council Queensland is available at cancerqld.org.au or 13 11 20.

 

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