Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Calls for Scotland to follow New Zealand and stub out smoking for next generation

Scotland is being encouraged to follow New Zealand and prevent youngsters from ever being able to take up smoking.
Scotland is being encouraged to follow New Zealand and prevent youngsters from ever being able to take up smoking.

Scotland is being urged to stub out the next generation of smokers – by following a trailblazing approach taken more than 10,000 miles away.

A new law has been tabled in New Zealand which will prevent everyone currently under 14 from ever being able to legally buy tobacco in their lifetime.

While smoking rates have been falling there, health chiefs felt more should be done, leading to the new ban which is due to be enacted next year.

The move has sparked calls for the likes of Scotland to consider a similar policy.

New Zealand’s ‘bold’ idea

Professor Steve Turner, a consultant paediatrician with NHS Grampian, described the policy as a “bold” way of breaking down barriers.

“I see lots of children whose parents smoke,” he said. “And I’ve yet to meet a parent who wants their child to smoke.

“I think they want to protect their children from the harmful effects of smoke, but some of them can’t.

Professor Steve Turner has compared smoking laws in Scotland and New Zealand
Professor Steve Turner has compared smoking laws in Scotland and New Zealand

Prof Turner, who is also a child healthcare expert at Aberdeen University, added: “Humans are an interesting species.

“You can have a picture that shows you what terror and horror might be ahead if you start smoking, but people still buy it.

“In Scotland it’s illegal to sell cigarettes to underage teens.

“Unfortunately, people are able to buy them once they reach their 18th birthday.”

Despite the warnings on packaging, many young adults will still buy cigarettes.

Despite the warnings on packaging, many young adults will still buy cigarettes.

‘Acceptable downsides’

Concerns have been raised that the New Zealand law change will have some considerable disadvantages.

The number of shops able to sell cigarettes will be slashed from 8,000 to just 500, and there are fears it could lead to an increase in black market dealings.

Prof Turner added: “People already addicted to nicotine will object or say it’s their right [to smoke].

“The manufacturers and people who sell cigarettes will lose.

“There will be what I would regard as acceptable downsides to essentially drawing a line to selling tobacco.”

‘We must go further’

It’s estimated that one in four heart attacks and three-quarters of lung cancer cases are directly related to smoking.

The chemicals found in cigarettes cause the walls in your arteries to become sticky, with fatty material clinging to them and causing clogs.

The Scottish Government is aiming to have a smoke-free generation by 2034, by which time it is hoped less than 5% of adults will smoke.

Current estimates put that figure for 2021 nearer 17%, but these numbers have been falling in recent years.

Jonathan Roden, policy and public affairs manager at the British Heart Foundation, has called on Scotland to continue its world-leading efforts when it comes to smoking.

“We were the first country in the UK to ban smoking in enclosed public spaces,” he said,.

“[This] move has had a positive impact on our nation’s health over the last 15 years.

“However, we must go further to help people across the country live longer, healthier lives.

“The announcement from New Zealand shows the many global efforts taking place to reduce the damaging effects of smoking.

“It is imperative on us all to have bold ambitions to achieve these aims.”


Read more:

Charity boss warns of tobacco companies targeting young people through social media

Smoking costs UK economy in excess of £19 billion a year, new report finds

Smokers ‘80% more likely to be admitted to hospital with Covid’

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]