Somerset smokers are asked to seize the moment and mark the 10th anniversary of pubs, clubs and workplaces becoming ‘smokefree’ by law by quitting this July.
Since the ban lots of measures have been introduced to reduce smoking rates which have roughly halved in Somerset in 10 years. Nationally the smoking rate was 24 per cent in 2007 and it was similar in Somerset. The rate has now fallen in Somerset to 12.3% in 2016 from 17.5% in 2014. Last year alone 1 in 8 smokers quit.
Measures have included shop displays being covered, a ban on smoking in cars with children, a minimum pack size of 20, and standardised packaging with large pictorial warnings.
Councillor Christine Lawrence, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, Somerset County Council said: “It’s hard to believe that Saturday 1 July marks the tenth anniversary of pubs, clubs and workplaces becoming smokefree by law.
“The children of today have no recollection of smoke-filled cafés, and find it hard to believe that people were once allowed to smoke in offices and taxis. We have all become used to being able to go for a night out and not come home smelling of smoke.
“Even so there are still thousands of smokers in Somerset. So, if you are still a smoker you can mark the 10th anniversary in your own special way and take the opportunity to stop now.
“If you are not ready to ditch the habit completely, think about switching to vaping instead, as the evidence so far is it is around 95% safer than smoking.”
Smokefreelife Somerset is the stop smoking service provided by Somerset County Council Public Health and provides free face to face support for people who are ready to quit smoking.
There’s lots of help and support available by searching “NHS Smokefree”, including a smartphone app and email encouragement as well as free face to face support. Contact Smokefreelife Somerset on 01823 356222 or check out http://www.smokefreelife.co.uk
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