Quit Victoria has urged smokers make a plan to quit on World No Tobacco Day.
Every year, World No Tobacco Day is celebrated globally on the 31st May.
This year's theme looks at the ways in which the tobacco industry attempt stand in the way of efforts to protect the public from the health, social, economic, and environmental damage their business causes.
The World Health Organisation has singled out tobacco industry interference as one of the greatest threats to ending the global tobacco epidemic.
Quit Policy Manager Kylie Lindorff said the tobacco industry’s continued efforts to undermine tobacco control had kicked into high-gear when confronted with plain packaging legislation.
“They have exploited every trick in the book in a desperate attempt to stop the most significant health reform in decades,” she said.
“They’ve used seemingly independent front groups such as the Alliance of Australian Retailers to advance their case and made untrue claims about the impact on Australian business on the back of shoddy research.”
Ms Lindorff said governments across the world had to remain vigilant to protect tobacco control from the vested and commercial interests of the tobacco industry.
World No Tobacco Day encourages a 24-hour period of abstinence from all tobacco consumption.
Ms Lindorff said World No Tobacco Day was an ideal time to give the Quitline a call and get help developing a plan to quit.
“About 4000 Victorians die every year of a smoking-caused illness but the good news is that your body begins to enjoy the positive health effects of quitting almost straight away,” she said.
“After four years, there is a large drop in your risk of a heart attack and after fifteen years, your risk of stroke is close to that of a person who never smoked.
“Quitting smoking is the single best thing you can do for your health and our Quitline specialists can provide free guidance and support to help you realise a life without cigarettes.”
To arrange an interview with Fiona Sharkie, contact Quit Media co-ordinator Jessica Craven on 0400 424 559.