British Columbia's Clean Air Coalition have released a new report focusing on reducing smoking rates in the province, with five key aims created that they believe should have a positive impact.
Formed of a partnership between the BC Lung Association, Heart & Stroke BC and the Canadian Cancer Society, the coalition are keen to target increasingly complex smoking patterns in the province.
Despite seeing smoking rates follow global trends by dropping, diseases related to tobacco still cause more than 16 deaths a day in British Columbia alone. A figure greater than drug and alcohol abuse, road traffic accidents, suicide and homicide combined!
In response the coalition have released their new report, which includes five key ways to lower tobacco use in the province. These are:
- Make it harder for young people to start using tobacco.
- Make tobacco product retailers more accountable and products less available.
- Ensure equal access to public clean-air spaces like parks, patios and beaches.
- Maintain access to free, evidence-based smoking cessation programs.
- Increase smoke-free options for the growing majority who live in multi-unit housing.
Andrea Seale, BC Director at the Canadian Cancer Society, highlighted why she feels action needs to be taken now. Speaking at the publishing of the report she said: “Considering tobacco use kills half of those who use cigarettes, disables many more, and drains $2 billion from our health system annually in direct and indirect costs, governments are wise to push forward ever-tighter tobacco controls.”
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