14 March 2015

No butts about smoking

It was interesting to read in today's Advertiser that smoking rates have dropped to 15.7% for adults and that only 14.8% of young people now choose to smoke. It has been a long road for me from my first teaching position where it seemed like everyone gathered in the staffroom at recess and lunch and everyone smoked even during meetings to where we are today where no smoking is allowed by law on any school grounds.
In my first stint on Council in 1995 I was fobbed off by the CEO when I asked about smoking in the Civic Centre after meetings. Not to be put off I put my first Motion on Notice to Council and gained the support of my colleagues and smoking inside was banned. Later I successfully ensured that no smoking was allowed in the buildings or within 10 m of an entrance of any Council building (2012). More recently we have seen smoking banned in children's playgrounds, and major events due to my initiative. Council now offers 50% discount to restaurants and cafes that choose to be smoke free. Soon all smoking in these areas will be banned by legislation.

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