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New Smokefree Coalition Director Appointed

New Smokefree Coalition Director Appointed
Media Release, 10 January 2006

Former Invercargill MP Mark Peck has been appointed as the new director of the Smokefree Coalition, following the resignation of Leigh Sturgiss. Ms Sturgiss was director for five years.

“I am delighted to be appointed to this position,” said Mr Peck.

“While very good legislation was passed in 2003 regulating smokefree environments, much work remains to be done to reduce the terrible toll taken on New Zealanders by smoking-related illness and death.

“Issues around taxation, point of sale display and health warnings on cigarette packets clearly need a kick along.

“From a personal perspective I firmly believe that it is vital that we do all we can to discourage young people from starting to smoke. It is well known that the tobacco industry needs young people to commence smoking to replace adults who have quit, or died from smoking-related illnesses.”

Mr Peck said that increasing the price of cigarettes, and introducing graphic pictorial health warnings on tobacco packets were two of the tools that could be used to prompt people to quit smoking, and encourage young people to stay smokefree.

ENDS

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