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Coalition applauds proposed smoking ban

Smokefree Coalition applauds proposed smoking ban for bars and restaurants

The Smokefree Coalition says Parliament’s Health Select Committee should be applauded for taking a stand on the health of New Zealand workers.

The Coalition says the committee’s recommendation to ban smoking in bars and restaurants within 12 months from enactment will save the lives of hospitality works exposed to dangerous carcinogens contained in second hand smoke.

Director Leigh Sturgiss says the evidence about the risks associated with second-hand smoke has mounted, even during the time the Health Select Committee has been hearing evidence.

Ms Sturgiss says the proposed legislation may appear dramatic but it is simply a sign that New Zealand society is growing up and moving on.

“In the past smoking was associated with glamour and sophistication but most people now recognise that there is nothing glamorous about dying of smoking-related illnesses.”

She points out that Ireland has public support for plans to outlaw smoking in all public places, including bars and restaurants, from 2004.

“A recent poll found 59 percent of the Irish public is backing the ban, despite the fact that smoking is common in Irish bars.”

Ms Sturgiss says the hospitality industry should also be heartened by a recent review of 97 studies in eight countries which concluded there was no negative business impact from smoking bans.

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