Quit Victoria - Main Menu Quitline Logo

School survey results confirm the need for point of sale bans

Tuesday 23 November, 2004

Quit Victoria has renewed calls to ban the display of cigarettes at point of sale after research revealed that adolescents have been exposed to cigarette promotions in shops such as milk bars and supermarkets.

The report, Smoking among Australian secondary school students 2002, showed that over 205 000 secondary students were currently involved with tobacco smoking, the lowest figure since the survey was first conducted twenty years ago.

Despite the legal age of purchasing cigarettes being 18 years, 24% of all students who had smoked in the last week bought their last cigarettes themselves. In this group the most common points for buying cigarettes were milk bars, petrol stations and supermarkets.

Quit Victoria's Executive Director, Todd Harper, said that ensuring tobacco products were out of sight at point of sale was a vital part of preventing young people from taking up smoking.

""By removing cigarette displays from point of sale, we can restrict the ability of tobacco industry to peddle their product to adolescents,"" said Mr Harper.

Across all age groups (12-17) the proportion of students smoking fell from 20% in 1999 to 16% in 2002.

Mr Harper said that it was fantastic to see such a drop in the number of students smoking but emphasised that need for more to be done to see this trend continues.

“Smoking is a habit that will eventually kill up to 2 out of 3 lifetime users, and the younger someone starts smoking the more likely it becomes that they will develop a dependency on nicotine.”

“Why should we allow such harmful products at point of sale?” said Mr Harper.

ends

Further information:

Edwina Vellar,
Media Manager
ph: (03) 9635 5400
mob: 0417 303 811           
email: edwina.Vellar@cancervic.org.au

Real life stories

How I gave up

I was in a car smash 20 years ago, and was on life support for about 10 days.

During that time I had a lung infection, so the doctors said my lungs needed to be drained of fluid. I was...

Read more of this story ›