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Students urged to have their say on anti-smoking ads

Posted 12 Nov, 2018

Quit Victoria this week launched its annual Critics’ Choice initiative and is calling on high school students to get involved.

Now in its 18th year, the program encourages students nationwide to watch and critique 11 anti-smoking advertisements from around the world, and vote on which is the most effective in deterring young people from smoking. 

Quit Victoria Director Dr Sarah White said with over 15,000 deaths caused by smoking in Australia each year, it’s as important as ever to get young people talking about the dangers of smoking.

“Critics’ Choice is an important initiative because it sparks conversations in classrooms about the health risks associated with smoking and enables students to visualise the effects of tobacco use,” Dr White said.

“Fortunately, fewer young Australians are taking up smoking, but we can’t afford to become complacent. The tobacco industry is working harder than ever to develop products, such as flavour-changing capsules in cigarette filters, and use sneaky marketing tactics, like using social media influencers to advertise cigarettes, to make smoking attractive to more teenagers and young adults.

“Critics’ Choice is an engaging way for teachers to gets students thinking and talking about the issues surrounding tobacco use and control.”

Teachers are encouraged to complete activities from the Teacher Resource and create classroom discussion around the advertisements. When students vote, their school goes into the draw to win a $500 sports voucher.

To find out more, visit

Quit Victoria is a partnership between VicHealth, the State Government of Victoria and Cancer Council Victoria. For more information, visit:

Media release

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