World Smokefree Day 2014 - Perfect opportunity to quit

26 May 2014

MEDIA RELEASE

‘Quit now – it’s about whānau’ is the message for this year’s World Smokefree Day, and it starts in Tairawhiti’s homes and communities.  

“Research indicates that children with parents who smoke are three times more likely to become smokers,” explains Aporina Chapman, Tairawhiti District Health (TDH) tobacco control health promotion advisor.

Celebrated globally on 31 May, this year’s World Smokefree Day is about encouraging and supporting friends, families and whānau across New Zealand to quit and creating environments where our children are free from exposure to tobacco.

“We know that parents, whether they are smokers or not, feel very strongly about not exposing children to smoking”, says Ms Chapman.  “Children see their parents smoke and this has a strong effect on what they perceive as normal. Evidence suggests children who come from homes where smoking is seen as the norm will most likely take up the habit.”

“Parents, whānau and caregivers can make positive changes to the environment children are growing up in, even if they smoke. Talking to their children about smoking and establishing smokefree rules like not smoking around children, keeping the house and car smokefree is a fantastic start and a step in the right direction to protecting their children”, Ms Chapman added.

World Smokefree Day is a perfect opportunity to work together to achieve the goal of a Smokefree Aotearoa 2025, encouraging and supporting more people to quit to have a future in which our children and grandchildren will enjoy tobacco-free lives.

“Join with smokers and non-smokers alike, all around the world, and be a role model for the wellbeing of your family in 2014 – it’s about whānau,” TDH chief executive Jim Green urges.

There are a number of local activities you can get involved in the lead up to 31 May. Representatives from TDH, Turanga Health and Ngati Porou Hauora have coordinated a street march that will take place on Friday 30 May. It will start at 11am from the Police Station on Gladstone Road and finish at Pak’nSave car park. All those wishing to support the march are welcome to come along. For more information please contact aporina.chapman@tdh.org.nz

Another worthwhile activity is WERO, a team challenge which offers the exciting opportunity to quit smoking with members of your team, whanau and club with $5k up for grabs for the winning team to stay quit for three months. For more information visit www.wero.me or contact aporina.chapman@tdh.org.nz

 ENDS

For more information please contact: Louisa Chapman, Temporary Communications Manager, Tairawhiti District Health, 06 869-0500, 021 223-7094.

Background information