The Victorian Government has been awarded the Dirty Ashtray award for the worst-performing government in tobacco control.
The award, which is presented by the Australian Medical Association and Australian Council on Smoking and Health, was announced this morning at the AMA national conference.
“It’s disappointing but not surprising given the State Government’s lack of action on smokefree outdoor dining and drinking areas and the lack of commitment to continuing social marketing funding,” Cancer Council Chief Executive Todd Harper said.
Heart Foundation Chief Executive Kathy Bell said Victoria was still the only state in the country that had not either already introduced or announced an intention to introduce smokefree outdoor dining and drinking areas.
“It’s time the State Government took action on this important issue,” she said.
Quit Executive Director Fiona Sharkie said the Victoria had traditionally been a leader in tobacco control.
“We hope the State Government will take this dubious honour as a wake-up call,” she said.
“History has told us that when you take the foot off the pedal in tobacco control, smoking rates increase and that is the last thing we want for Victoria.”