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Press Releases (216)

Fresh has welcomed the effect of tobacco laws which carried widespread public support - but has urged the government to go further in its drive to go 'smoke-free' in England by 2030.



Responding to a government consultation on a review of particular regulations, Fresh has outlined to the Department of Health and Social Care that current laws around tobacco such as smoking in cars carrying children and putting tobacco displays out of sight have helped smoking rates in the North East and youth smoking rates reach an all-time low.


The removal of tobacco displays in shops, prohibiting smoking in cars carrying children and restrictions on the sale of nicotine-inhaling products such as vapourisers to under 18s all work together to help smokers to quit, discourage young people from starting to smoke and protect people from harm.


The laws play a key role in the North East vision of making smoking history, alongside other actions such as quitting campaigns and providing support to smokers who want to quit.


Retailers within County Durham, Northumberland and Tyne and Wear have also outlined their support for the laws with over half (55%) supporting the regulations on the removal of tobacco displays and 9 out of 10 supporting laws restricting the sale of nicotine-inhaling products to children.


But Fresh say that more action is needed if the government is to achieve its ambition to go 'smoke-free' in England in 2030 and that nearly half of the North East public think the government could be doing more to limit smoking with only 7 per cent thinking the government has gone too far.


Fresh outlined key measures the government could bring in to accelerate the decline in smoking rates such as introducing a "polluter pays" charge on the tobacco industry to fund measures to encourage smokers to quit and discourage youth uptake, increasing the age of sale for tobacco products from 18 to 21 and introduce retail licensing to support enforcement.


Ailsa Rutter OBE, Director of Fresh, said: "We know from talking to smokers that thanks to the law, the car is now seen by most as the last place they would dream of smoking and there is high awareness that it is illegal.


"Similarly with tobacco displays, shops have adapted and our children no longer see cigarettes and people who have quit no longer face the temptation when they walk into a shop."


She added: "Here in England we have some of the most effective tobacco laws in the world – they are simple to implement, comply with and enforce and most importantly of all, they work.  The fact that smoking rates are continuing to decline is testament to this.  But we can't be complacent.


"To continue making a difference, the government also needs to consider going further and bring in new legislation, including 'making the polluter pay' by placing a charge on the tobacco industry to address the damage that their products inflict on society.  We would also like the age of sale for tobacco to be raised to 21 given how harmful tobacco is, and for a licensing system to be introduced to support enforcement around illicit tobacco.


"There is significant public support for all of these measures and the government needs to be both bold but also reassured that these are the next logical steps to take."


North East retailer John McClurey said: "The introduction of these laws has been generally viewed as a positive step towards the reduction of smoking.  Since the tobacco displays have been covered I have had former smokers commenting to me that it removes a temptation and helps them to stay quit.





View items...
Information floods in on illegal tobacco sales following Keep It Out campaign
Sunday, 08 March 2020
Trading Standards have received hundreds of pieces of information on where illegal tobacco is being sold following a campaign aimed at protecting kids from smoking. Information about sales from places like private homes, pubs and shops has been flooding in since Fresh ran the Keep It Out campaign during January…
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Fresh welcomes PHE's 6th vaping report
Wednesday, 04 March 2020
Fresh has welcomed Public Health England's (PHE) sixth independent e-cigarette report, commissioned from researchers at King's College London, which has been published today (Wednesday 4 March 2020) alongside new PHE advice on vaping in NHS mental health Trusts. The report provides an update on the use of nicotine vaping products…
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160,000 could have COPD in NE as Every Breath is relaunched
Monday, 02 March 2020
Smokers are being urged to quit and reduce their risk of developing a lung disease which can leave people fighting for breath. It comes as the latest estimates show around 160,000 people in the region could have COPD. With a week to go until No Smoking Day, the "Every Breath"…
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Cancer survivor Sue joins calls for Smokefree 2030 and make big tobacco pay for prevention
Monday, 03 February 2020
OVER 15 people a day in the North East die from smoking [2]] zand 280 children a day in England start smoking [1]. Those are the stark figures published today as a North East cancer survivor joins health leaders nationally to call on the Government to deliver on its ambition…
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Monday, 20 January 2020
NEW figures out in time for New Year show that around 174 people will have died in the North East from smoking by the end of the 12 days of Christmas. And nearly 1200 people will have been admitted to hospital from smoking. Smoking kills around 5,300 people in the…
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Illegal tobacco - help keep it out and stop kids smoking
Monday, 20 January 2020
PEOPLE are being encouraged to help stop local kids from smoking by reporting the sale of illegal tobacco. It comes as new figures show that around one in 10 cigarettes smoked in the North East is illegal – with private homes or "tab houses" and dishonest shops the two leading…
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Christmas smokefree savings
Monday, 02 December 2019
Christmas is fast approaching and it's an expensive time for everyone. But if you smoke – whether cigarettes or hand rolled tobacco - have you ever considered what festive goodies it could pay for instead? Fresh has been adding up the costs – and it is scary how they mount…
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Thousands of smokers' lives could be saved by switching completely to vaping
Tuesday, 12 November 2019
THOUSANDS of early deaths and cases of disease could be prevented over time if every smoker stopped smoking tobacco completely and switched to vaping. That is the claim from North East tobacco control programme Fresh and a senior North East cancer doctor as experts from around the globe attend the…
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Smoking drives 35,000 into poverty
Thursday, 17 October 2019
NEW analysis of Government data reveals that smoking drives over 35,000 people into poverty in the North East [1]. The analysis – by Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) – reveals that as well as the death and disease caused by smoking, tobacco addiction is resulting in poverty for working…
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Cost of smoking to the North East
Tuesday, 01 October 2019
CALLS have been made for tobacco companies to pay more towards the damage they cause as new figures show smoking costs vital services in the North East at least £626m a year. The data according to calculations carried out for Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) show the high costs…
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