Issue 296 | 22 June 2016

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Editorial: Access to killer weed all too easy

New Zealand Herald, 15 June 2016

We applaud the Government's leadership in working towards the Smokefree 2025 goal, and, in particular, the continuing tobacco tax increases and progress on plain packaging.

Now is a good time to take stock and consider which future measures will help us achieve our world-leading smokefree goal.

A recent Herald editorial queried whether further tobacco tax increases, plain packs and enhanced health warnings will work. We believe there is strong evidence these will be effective. Since annual increases in tobacco taxation began in 2010, daily smoking has fallen from 21 percent of the population in 2006 to 15 percent in 2013 (and from 41 percent to 32 percent among Māori). Data from around the world shows graphic health warnings help prevent smoking and support quitting.

Plain packaging will see New Zealand warnings become substantially larger and thus more salient. Evidence from Australia clearly indicates that plain packaging is contributing to reducing smoking.

The Herald editorial also queried why a "stubborn few" smokers continue to light up. This question helps identify further actions to discourage young people from taking up smoking and encourage and help smokers to quit. We want to highlight four areas where we could, and should, be doing more.

First, tobacco is far too easily available; second, some social settings continue to support young people starting to smoke; third, greater investment is needed in smokefree campaigns and, finally, we could provide more quitting support.

Despite the terrible harm it causes, cigarettes are available from more than 5000 dairies, convenience stores, gas stations and supermarkets. Almost half of New Zealand's primary schools and over three-quarters of secondary schools have a retail outlet selling tobacco within a kilometre of their classrooms. Easy access to tobacco can also undermine quit attempts among smokers and increase relapse among those smokers who have managed to quit.

Find out more.


Farewell the Smokefree Coalition

This will be the final issue of the Tobacco Control Update, as this newsletter was a service specification of the Smokefree Coalition, whose Ministry of Health contract terminates 30 June.

The Smokefree Coalition will be winding down all its services over the following month, and on its last day, invites you to come celebrate 20 years of faithful service in New Zealand tobacco control.

Friday July 29th, 5.30-7pm
Southern Cross Bar, Lounge
29 Abel Smith St, Te Aro

Members of the Smokefree Coalition can feel proud of the influential part they have played in New Zealand's tobacco control programme, as a united voice for action. With our Vision and collective advocacy, we were instrumental in ensuring numerous legislative measures and gaining Government's commitment to a Smokefree Aotearoa by 2025.

We thank everyone who answered our calls to action, delivered our information resources to decision-makers, and took an active part in our events and discussion groups.

We look forward to serving you one last time, with light refreshments and a warm final farewell reception on the 29th July. Please RSVP to

Government calls for public consultation on tobacco packaging regulations

In 2013 the Government decided to introduce a new regulatory scheme to standardise tobacco products and packaging

The legislation that creates the regulatory powers to bring in standardised tobacco products and packaging – the Smoke-free Environments (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Amendment Bill – is currently progressing through Parliament. The date when the regulations will come into force depends on when the Bill is passed, and has yet to be determined. 

Regulations will be needed to bring the new regulatory scheme into force. The Government has not yet made any final decisions on these detailed regulatory requirements and the Ministry of Health is now seeking feedback on draft regulations for the Bill. 

The scope of the current consultation is confined to the proposed requirements for standardised tobacco products and packages as set out in the exposure draft of the regulations (PDF, 637 KB)

The consultation document (PDF, 471 KB) gives an overview of the exposure draft regulations, raises a number of consultation issues, and poses specific questions which may help you to prepare your submission.

The draft regulations are set out in four parts:

  • Part 1 sets out general requirements that will apply to all tobacco products (subpart 1) and all tobacco packages (subpart 2) respectively. 
  • Part 2 contains provisions that apply only to cigarettes, cigarette packs and cigarette cartons. 
  • Part 3 relates to loose tobacco packaging. 
  • Part 4 covers packaging for cigars.

Consultation issues and questions are set out in the consultation document under two headings.

  • Size and quantities of tobacco products.
  • Permitted markings on tobacco packages.

Submitters can also suggest other additional features to increase the effectiveness of standardised packaging and make other comments on the content of the draft regulations.

The Ministry welcomes submissions on the content and coverage of the draft regulations, backed up wherever possible with detailed reasons and factual evidence.

Find out more, including how to make a submission.

Need help with your submission? Read an ASPIRE2025 draft for guidance.

Australian expert offers advice on combating industry spin

Kylie Lindorff, Manager, Tobacco Control Policy, Cancer Council Victoria

In Australia, when the plain packaging war was just beginning, the tobacco industry set up a front group called the Alliance of Australian Retailers. As time went on and through a few lucky leaks from insiders, the extent of the tobacco industry's involvement in the group and their campaigns became more and more obvious.

Australian NGOs did three things, all of which were successful and are strategies which I think could be used both in country and more globally.

  1. Promoted the links and funding to friendly journalists who ran stories in major newspapers and this generated a lot of free media on radio etc. It also meant that any time this group came out and said anything in the press, journalists were educated and willing to ask them about their funding or if the tobacco industry were telling them what to say.
  2. Made sure that key politicians including, but not limited to the Health Minister, knew that these types of groups were just industry front groups. In particular write to Ministers who are responsible for the supposed issues these front groups represent – Minster responsible for tax, for intellectual property, for trade, for consumer affairs etc etc. If Ministers have any sense, they won't want to be aligned with the tobacco industry or their front groups.
  3. Ran large half page ads in major newspapers to educate the public that this group and their campaigns were being funded and pushed by the tobacco industry.

Find out more here.

From our experience, it's not useful to get caught up in a public argument on the issues they are raising... intellectual property, tax, personal freedom are all arguments they know will get some sympathy. But if we stick to the health arguments, they have no comeback – they cannot win that argument ever – and there is no question now from Australia's evaluation that plain packaging works.

Then focus on discrediting the organisations making the arguments. Highlight the links to the industry and funding received, highlight they are parroting tobacco industry arguments, highlight that in many cases they aren't even close to an organisation – they are a ‘one-person blog' representing nobody, and keep putting the question to them, "So, you think it is OK for kids to become addicted to a product that will likely kill them". Back them into a corner on the health argument and they cannot escape without totally discrediting themselves in the eyes of the public.

Lastly, don't feel like you need to respond to every argument that appears in the media. They will be trying to get as much air time for their opposition as possible and to create doubt in the minds of the public. Make a judgement call on whether an issue they've raised has gotten minimal coverage and if so then let it fade away. Respond publicly only if warranted – spend more of your time doing advocacy behind the scenes, directly to the politicians, powerful allies and other decision makers. Public support will come if you keep the focus on the health arguments and particularly the impact on children and you are able to discredit the industry and their ‘experts' and the allies doing their dirty work for them – then they can try to make any argument they like, but their credibility will be so low nobody will give it much weight.

Please remember that all the evaluation from Australia's implementation on plain packaging and useful fact sheets are on our Plain Facts website – this is your first stop if you want to counter industry arguments about what has and hasn't happened in Australia.

Cigarette taxes – a panel discussion

Radio New Zealand, 5 June 2016

Cigarette smoking has been front and centre in the news this week – with the announcement that the price of a pack of cigarettes will rise to $30 over the next four years.

Joining Wallace Chapman to discuss the pros and cons of tobacco taxes are: Associate professor Marewa Glover from Massey University who has worked on tobacco control issues for 23 years and is a recognised authority on electronic cigarettes and their use; Tony Blakely, a professor of public health at Otago University, Wellington; and economist Dr Eric Crampton of The New Zealand Initiative.

Listen (35' 25").

Disclosures: Imperial Tobacco and Lion are among the New Zealand Initiative's 44 member organisations. Neither Tony Blakely nor Marewa Glover has ever received funding from the tobacco, alcohol or food industries.

A response to the new training standards developed by Inspiring

By Sue Taylor, T&T Consulting Ltd.

As part of the National Training Strategy, the National Training Service, Inspiring, has developed a series of training standards. Draft training standards are developed for training in:

  • Brief Intervention
  • Using Medicines (Refresher)
  • Advanced Competencies (Group Based Treatment)
  • Smoking Cessation Fundamentals.

However, the majority of the draft standards purported to have been "developed" in each of the four documents is in fact classified as "best practice" in a series of New Zealand guidelines i.e.

The majority of past and present trainers in the tobacco control sector, with or without Ministry of Health (MoH) funding, have adhered to "best practice" in accordance with the above series of guidelines. As such, intended practitioners who have participated in smoking cessation training provided by those trainers, gained knowledge of how to apply "best practice" that included promotion of MedSafe-approved cessation aids, recommended and available in New Zealand as outlined in applicable guidelines.

In addition to those standards, in June 2009, the MoH commissioned Matua Raki to oversee a review of the addiction sector competencies inclusive of Alcohol and Other Drug practitioner competencies, Problem Gambling treatment competencies and Smoking Cessation competencies. The overall review was managed by the Drug and Alcohol Practitioners Association Aotearoa (dapaanz) working in collaboration with Abacus. For the review reference group, the MoH recommended T&T Consulting Ltd, Trish Fraser and Dr Hayden McRobbie as the smoking cessation expert advisors. The Smoking Cessation competencies that were subsequently developed and completed in November 2010, were based on the 2007 New Zealand Guidelines for Smoking Cessation (NZGFSC) alongside varying overseas standards, in particular from England the National Health Service (NHS) Centre for Smoking Cessation and Training (NCSCT).

After the completion of the above competencies review in 2010, the MoH, in consultation with selected smoking cessation expert advisors, trainers and other professionals, developed the Mandatory Smoking Cessation Tier One Service Specification.

For many MoH funded smoking cessation service providers, in particular the 32 Aukati Kai Paipa providers, these specifications were incorporated into contracts from 1 July 2011. The introduction of Tier One specifications was significantly different from previous specifications which were based on a 12 month programme. The Tier One specification that will cease on 30 June 2016, is a three-month programme. The new realignment stop smoking services will be a four-week programme with the focus on treating groups as opposed to individuals. The process and effectiveness of the realignment of smoking cessation services shall remain unknown, as very recent feedback from the MoH indicates no evaluation process of the realignment is in place nor is intended to be.

Read more.

Draft Training Standards – Request for feedback

As part of the National Training Strategy, the National Training Service (NTS) has developed a series of training standards. Attached are the draft training standards developed for training in

  • Brief Intervention
  • Using Medicines (Refresher)
  • Advanced Competencies (Group Based Treatment)
  • Smoking Cessation Fundamentals.

These are designed to provide the benchmark standards in smoking cessation training. These standards are not designed to be prescriptive of how, when or in what format training is delivered (although, some guidelines are included). The purpose of the standards is to provide benchmarks for knowledge and skill that need to be adhered to in training to ensure that we achieve consistent training outcomes throughout the sector.

These standards have been developed in consultation with subject matter experts. NTS is now seeking feedback from the health and tobacco control sectors. Please track changes on the documents or write an email to All feedback must be submitted to by 5pm, 20 June 2016.

For more information on the standards you can visit or contact Mereta Snedden (, 021 885 650).

The final WERO a success among mental health patients and staff

Pictured left to right are: Team Manawa Ngawari: Jane Galea, Kristy Joyce, Wendy Simmons, Dr Peter McColl and Breviss Wolfgramm (WERO Regional Coordinator).

WERO was designed to appeal to the competitive nature of smoking Māori, and after a successful pilot in Te Taitokerau and Hawke's Bay, was funded through the innovation fund for national competitions. Teams of 10 could register their waka and with a local WERO kaitātaki and kaihautū, competed against other waka to stay auahi kore. At four weeks, eight weeks and 12 weeks, teams were smokelysed and the team with the most people smokefree won prizes for their chosen organisation.

In 2016, after attaining unparalleled success with the corporate sector, for the final WERO challenge, the Regional coordinator for WERO Auckland, Breviss Wolfgramm, wanted to try something different and created a special race just for mental health provider teams. Breviss had seen the research suggesting that the smoking prevalence was highest among people suffering mental illnesses.

As a kaitātaki, Breviss learnt many mental health staff members find it hard to break the culture of quitting inside their facilities because they are not auahi kore themselves. It seemed to him the mental health sector had become the last bastion where smoking was still considered a "norm" that needed to be broken.

There were 31 Teams with a combined total of 114 staff and service users involved in the "Mental health and Addictions WERO challenge". After four weeks 30.7 percent showed a non-smoking status: mainstream statistics for the same period average 44 percent. After eight weeks 48.2 percent showed a non-smoking status: mainstream statistics for the same period average 33 percent. After 12 weeks 62.2 percent showed a non-smoking status: mainstream statistics for the same period average 22 percent! There were also an additional 25 service users who weren’t registered in the competition but attended the weekly sessions with their chosen organisation because they were interested in learning how to become a person that does not smoke.

Dr Peter McColl, Service Clinical Director at Te Whetu Tawera and a Consultant Psychiatrist at Manawanui Oranga Hinengaro, the Auckland District Health Board mental health service for Māori, was a heavy smoker going through a health scare at the time WERO was scouting for teams.

Peter was particularly attracted to WERO's visual and online framework, and became part of a team of colleagues, and then also service users.

"I'd never tried quitting before and truly didn't believe I could. But I loved the kaupapa and cultural framework around WERO.

"My colleagues kindly said I'd helped motivate them and some of the most supportive comments came from patients – which was a telling and inspirational reversal of our usual relationship.

"The fourth-week challenge to be 24 hours smokefree woke me up to the meaning of 'WERO' and was a total game-changer."

Peter's first smokelyser test was 58 (very heavy smoker), and whereas this was the expected result he needed to challenge himself from week to week.

He was very proud to get a 6 result on the final day of WERO.

"I must admit I haven't quit smoking, but a lot has changed: I don't smoke outside my workplace anymore, when I used to be infamous for it: people always knew they could find me... on the pavement; and I don't smoke when I'm on-call, even though it can be stressful.

To congratulate kaihoe and to raise awareness of their success as a "world first", WERO held a prize giving event for the "Mental Health and Addictions challenge" at the Auckland town hall which happened to coincide with World Smokefree Day on 31 May.

WERO would like to thank the following individuals and organisations for their tautoko to this kaupapa: Berni McBride (NRA), Jane Galea- Singer (ADHB), Latu Pasa (Emerge Aotearoa), Emma Helmich,Paul Emery (Pathways), Heber Fruen (Pacifica Quit Smoking), Zoe Hawke (Te Ara Hā Ora), Catherine Manning (ARPHS), Manawanui Marae, Harakeke House and all the teams and external stakeholders who participated.

Public health researchers fighting back against lobbyists

Public health researchers worldwide have long been under attack from lobbyists for the tobacco, alcohol and junk food industries. Now some are fighting back. Adam Dudding reports.

When Professor Robert Beaglehole was at medical school in the 1960s, everywhere you looked people were having heart attacks. "They were dropping dead in the street."

Back then, says the cardiologist and veteran public health researcher, there weren't yet many good treatments available for heart disease, so it seemed obvious to him that he should look at prevention instead: helping people quit smoking; reducing saturated fats in the average diet.

To do that required changes in public understanding and government policy, so he built a career as a public health scientist, founding Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) in 1982 and later taking big jobs with the World Health Organization.

Scientific evidence led inevitably to public activism. It also led him into the firing line. The spokespeople from the tobacco industry called him and his colleagues 'health nazis', 'do-gooders', 'nanny-staters'. He shrugged it off.

Find out more.

15th World Congress on Public Health – Registration now open

15th World Congress on Public Health (WCPH2017)
3-7 April 2017, Melbourne Australia

Register your expression of interest.

Read the latest Congress newsletter.

Registration for the 15th World Congress on Public Health 2017 is now open! Registration is to be completed online and accommodation can be booked at the same time. All information pertaining to this including rates and categories, social function details and hotel options are now available on the Congress website.

The World Congress will be held in Melbourne, and never before has such a prestigious event been held so close to home. It will attract researchers, practitioners, academics, administrators, policy makers, industry representatives, students and stakeholders from around the globe, but it will naturally have a strong Asia-Pacific focus.

This creates a unique and wonderful opportunity for people in this region to demonstrate their public health initiatives, challenges, opportunities, collaborations and advancements. It will also be an opportunity for us all to learn from what our peers in the region have achieved and experienced.

The call for abstracts closes 26 August, so you still have plenty of time to put an abstract together and to plan for your attendance in April next year. Abstracts can be submitted at the World Congress website.

Visit the World Congress website to learn more about the keynote speakers already engaged and also about sponsorship and exhibition opportunities.

2016 Conference for General Practice

Early bird registration closes 23 June. Register now!

You asked for more practical sessions, a touch of clinical, internationally recognised key speakers and plenty of variety. This year's programme delivers on this and more.

Join us for three days of networking, concurrent sessions and panels on the important issues facing GPs at New Zealand's only national GP conference that's presented by GPs for GPs.

Mix with your peers and decision makers in an environment focused on developing the profession. CPD points will be automatically awarded for attendance.

Where: The Langham, Auckland
When: Friday 29 - Sunday 31 July 2016
Keynote speakers: Professor Michael Kidd, Professor Shaun Ewen and Dr Robert Varnam

Note: The extended programme will include our highly regarded Quality Symposium 'What's your partnership promise' as a pre-conference day on 28 July. Combine your conference and quality symposium registrations to receive a special discount.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Catalyst 4 Change 2016 Conference

3-4 August 2016

We are proud to present to you the Catalyst 4 Change – Achieving Sustainable Development Goals for Women, Children and their Families Conference delivered in partnership by the Pacific Society of Reproductive Health and TAHA Well Pacific Mother and Infant Service.

This forum aims to raise awareness of the recently ratified Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the universal determination to progress a range of indicators by 2030. The SDGs, if achieved, will significantly improve the lives of many women, children and families. While reproductive health is an important focus of the conference, evidence commands that consideration be given to broad impacts such as economics, human rights, culture and the environment. With these in mind, our objective is to identify and describe effective catalysts (people, policy, programmes, research and innovations) that lead to real transformation.

We are pleased to present a programme that portrays a wide range of activities in the sector focused on women and children and their families. We are also privileged to have a range of international and local leaders who will share their insights on sustainable development for women, children and families including Dr Colin Tukuitonga, Director-General of the Pacific Community (SPC), Metiria Turei – New Zealand member of Parliament and the female co-leader of the Green Party, Dr Lance O'Sullivan – New Zealander of the Year 2014 for bringing health programmes to the rural disadvantaged and the Rt Hon Prime Minister of Samoa – Tuilaepa Aiono Sailele Malielegaoi. These leaders are among a stellar line-up of speakers who will provide a range of perspectives and ideas and contribute to a forum that aims to incite and inspire.

Registrations are now open and will close on Friday 8 July at 5pm. We look forward to having you join us at the Catalyst 4 Change 2016.

Recent research

Smoking, not our tikanga: exploring representations of Māori and smoking in national media

Emerald Muriwai and Marewa Glover

This study aimed to explore representations of Mäori and smoking through examining a sample of online media from 2010 to 2015 on this topic. We identified four key themes in reporting: strengths-based representation; deficit-style representation; historical recognition; and cultural dissociation.

Read more.

Little change in tobacco imagery on New Zealand television: 10 years on

A content analysis of 73 hours of prime time evening television in 2014, including programmes, advertisements and trailers, was coded for tobacco imagery. Imagery was defined as being either neutral/pro-tobacco or anti-tobacco.

Read more.

The Tobacco Control Research Tūranga: ideas, innovation and impact

This symposium, held in Auckland on 25 May 2016, brought together researchers from around New Zealand across a wide range of disciplines and institutions to showcase their research supported by the Tobacco Control Research Tūranga in the second half of the grant. Their brief was to develop and test ground-breaking ideas that might contribute to smoking prevalence reduction.

Read more.

Burden of disease from second-hand smoke exposure in New Zealand

These researchers used a comparative risk assessment method to estimate the burden of disease attributable to second-hand smoke in New Zealand, in terms of deaths (for 2010) and disability-adjusted life years (for 2006).

Read more.

The socioeconomic gradient of second-hand smoke exposure in children: evidence from 26 low-income and middle-income countries

The objective was to provide the first analysis of socioeconomic inequalities in children's daily exposure to indoor smoking in households in 26 low-income and middle-income countries

Read more.

Pregnant teens are taking up smoking to make their babies small because they're 'scared of giving birth'

A 10-year national anthropological study into smoking in Australia has revealed girls as young as 16 are taking up the killer habit in an attempt to reduce the birth weight of their unborn babies.

Read more.

Cohort study of electronic cigarette use: effectiveness and safety at 24 months

The objective was to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of e-cigarettes, by comparing users of only e-cigarettes, smokers of only tobacco cigarettes and dual users.

Read more.

Smokefree shorts

Where possible, links to full articles are provided below each story.

New Zealand

Smoking ban support by Central Otago Mayor

Central Otago Mayor Tony Lepper says he is "extremely supportive'' of a 10-year smoke-free plan for the district.

In a submission to the Central Otago District Council's annual plan, Smokefree New Zealand proposed the council adopt a strategy in accordance with the Government's Smokefree New Zealand 2025 goal.

The plan would involve gradually banning smoking in certain areas in Central Otago over the next 10 years.

Otago Daily Times, 11 June 2016

Stubbing out the cigarette

Smokers are being urged to stub out their cigarette for good.

Following the announcement by the New Zealand Government to continue annual tax increases on tobacco until 2020 as part of Smokefree Aotearoa 2025, smoking is set to become more expensive than ever.

SunLive, 8 June 2016

R-rating for smoking on screen

New Zealand researchers are calling for TV shows that feature smoking scenes to be rated R.

A University of Otago study found almost a third of shows on prime-time free-to-air television featured tobacco imagery and over 80 percent of those showed smoking in a neutral or positive light.

While the total number of scenes featuring tobacco use had decreased when compared to a study in 2004, there had been little change.

New Zealand Herald, 1 June 2016

Max Key's cigarette snap stokes social media outrage

Max Key has been photographed in his underwear holding an unlit cigarette, just weeks after his father, Prime Minister John Key, announced tough new anti-smoking plans.

New Zealand Herald, 8 June 2016

Tobacco tax: butting out

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters is among those who believe the authorities are now being unfairly harsh on smokers. He is wrong – but for the right reasons.

The Listener, 9 June 2016

Health advocates accuse Whale Oil of defamation

A trio of health experts have launched a defamation case against Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater and tobacco lobbyist Carrick Graham.

Prof Doug Sellman of the University of Otago, Prof Boyd Swinburn of the University of Auckland and anti-smoking activist Shane Bradbock say Slater and Mr Graham have for "some years" been publishing "articles with a negative focus on various public health experts and advocates".

Much of the pair's work was revealed in Nicky Hager's 2014 book Dirty Politics.

Newshub, 15 June 2016

Government in e-cigarette push

As the Government rolls out its plan for tobacco plain packaging, Newshub can reveal it is also eyeing up legalising nicotine e-cigarettes.

Newshub, 31 May 2016

Switching to vaping

Of the 50,000 Kiwis who try to quit smoking every year, only about 10,000 are successful. Allison Hess talks with a Bay man who stubbed out the smokes and switched to e-cigarettes, and owners of a local vaping store.

Bay of Plenty Times, 16 June 2016

Gore may become smokefree

Gore may become the first town in Southland to make its public places smokefree.

The Southern District Health Board made a submission during the Gore District's Annual Plan process, encouraging it to adopt a Smokefree Environments Policy.

The proposal was discussed at an extraordinary council meeting on meeting on May 31, where councillors believed the proposal had merit.

Parks and reserves staff will prepare a report on the possibility of adopting a smokefree policy and report back to councillors.

Southland Times, 16 June 2016

British American Tobacco scales back NZ business to distribution

British American Tobacco's New Zealand business has lost responsibility for strategic decisions, leaving it principally a distribution point for the cigarette maker in an increasingly hostile market.

National Business Review, 17 June 2016

Two tobacco retailers nailed in sting

East Coast retailers sold cigarettes to minors during a sting operation conducted by Hauora Tairawhiti's tobacco control team earlier this month. A volunteer teenager acting under the supervision of a smokefree officer visited all cigarette retailers on the East Coast.

Gisborne Herald, 16 June 2016

Aiming for 1000 fewer Māori smokers in Northland every year

Ngati Hine Health Trust is part of a collective aiming to get 1000 Māori in Northland to quit smoking every year until 2025.

Kaiarahi supervisor Kapua Nathan says this will help the region to align with the Government's goal that by 2025, less than five percent of the population will be smokers.

The 2103 Census reports smoking prevalence in Northland is 19.1 percent, which is higher than the national rate of 15 percent.

The rates for particularly high among Māori, with 32.7 percent nationally and 33.9 per cent in Northland.

Stuff, 17 June 2016

Keeping Marlborough's green spaces smokefree

A council policy introduced two years ago made all parks, gardens, playgrounds, sports grounds, swimming pools and walkways in Marlborough smokefree, but limited awareness of the stance has prompted the Smokefree Marlborough Coalition to call for smokefree signs to be rolled out across Marlborough parks and playgrounds.

Stuff, 19 June 2016


People can't stop laughing at this anti-plain packaging ad and its 'terrible' Australian accent

A US lobby group has released a volley of attack ads targeting Australia's plain packaging laws complete with a dubious Australian accent and copious use of permanent markers that have left policy advisers and viewers in stitches.

"In life, not everything you hear is always true" is the very prescient opening line of a three-and-a-half minute YouTube clip posted by the Property Rights Alliance.

"Especially regarding Australia's plain packaging experiment," or rather "ploin pickaging ex-spearmint", warns the voice over that appears to be attempting an Australian accent.

Sydney Morning Herald, 7 June 2016

Ireland moves closer to becoming a smokefree country

Smoke-Free Spaces on the island of Ireland looks at the progress being made across the island of Ireland to develop tobacco-free workplaces, cars, health services and public places.

Newstalk ZB, 14 June 2016

California tightens restrictions on smoking in the workplace

For the first time in two decades, California has changed its statewide smoking laws. Some workplaces that were exempt from the previous smokefree workplace laws are no longer exempt. The new smoking laws also raised the minimum smoking age from 18 to 21.

Mondaq, 15 June 2016

Scotland's charter for a tobacco-free generation

ASH Scotland has developed an initiative to help deliver a Tobacco-free Generation by 2034. Scotland's Charter for a Tobacco-free Generation is aimed at organisations whose work directly or indirectly impacts on children, young people and families.

The aim of Scotland's Charter for a Tobacco-free Generation is to: inspire organisations to take action to reduce the harm caused by tobacco; raise awareness of the goal of creating a tobacco-free generation of Scots by 2034 and the Scottish Government's tobacco control strategy and; support organisations whose work impacts on children, young people and families.

ASH UK, 15 June 2016

Plain packaging protects the human right to health

Representing various Malaysian groups and associations, the National Cancer Society of Malaysia is responding to the statement 'Plain cigarette packaging an infringement against trademarks' that was published in Malaysiakini on 2 June 2 2016.

Malaysia Kini, 9 June 2016

Combating tobacco: youth taking control

Young people today are not staying silent and doing nothing. In fact, the Global Youth Tobacco Survey of school-aged young people, revealed that three out of four students agreed that tobacco smoke was dangerous and that smoking should be prohibited in public spaces.

Jakarta Post, 1 June 2016

Cameroon: fighting tobacco in schools

The tobacco industry is working against all odds to infiltrate the school milieu in Cameroon. This is the result of a study on the activities of the tobacco industry in schools presented during a press conference at the headquarters of the Cameroon Coalition Against Tobacco in Yaounde on 14 June 2016.

All Africa, 15 June 2016


"There is a long history of interference by vested interests in the formulation, execution and implementation of public health policies designed to promote the health of populations. The classic example is the tobacco industry, which has lied and distorted the evidence, attacked independent scientists, and paid for tame scientists and front groups to peddle their distortions of the evidence."

Professor Robert Beaglehole

Dominion Post, 19 June 2016


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