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Christmas shoppers enjoy a breath of fresh air

Wednesday 31 October, 2001

Christmas shoppers will enjoy a cleaner and healthier environment this year thanks to the introduction of smokefree shopping centres in Victoria from tomorrow.

Quit Victoria believes the move is yet another positive step for the health of Victorians.

Quit Executive Director Todd Harper says the increasing number of smokefree public places is making Victoria a healthier place to live.

""Research shows that environmental tobacco smoke is a cause of serious health problems, including heart disease and lung cancer.""

""For some people environmental tobacco smoke is unpleasant and annoying. But for others, such as babies and young children, and people with asthma, heart disease or a condition that makes them sensitive to tobacco smoke, being exposed to cigarette smoke can be very harmful or even life threatening.""

""The move to add shopping centres to the growing list of public places that are now required by law to be smokefree is great news for the Victorian community.

""Now all shoppers will be able to shop in greater comfort without worrying about the health risks posed by environmental tobacco smoke. I'm sure many parents will especially welcome this move as environmental tobacco smoke is particularly harmful for young children.""

Mr Harper says there is overwhelming community support for the move to smokefree shopping centres.

""A recent survey by the Centre for Behavioural Research in Cancer found over 80% of Victorians support bans on smoking in shopping centres, and almost three quarters of smokers surveyed supported total smoking bans in shopping centres.""

""We congratulate the Victorian Government for responding to the wishes of the community, and taking yet another step forward towards protecting the health of the public and workers from environmental tobacco smoke.""

Some facts about environmental tobacco smoke:

  • Environmental tobacco smoke causes lung cancer and heart disease in adults. Environmental tobacco smoke is particularly harmful to children - it has been shown to cause lower respiratory illness, reduced lung growth, middle ear disease and asthma in children.
  • Tobacco smoke is potentially harmful for people who suffer from asthma, as it can trigger an asthma attack.
  • Children who have asthma and are exposed to passive smoke are more likely to have more frequent and more severe asthma symptoms.
  • ends

    Further information:

    Zoe Furman
    Media Communications Manager
    Quit Victoria

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