Media Release - NSLHD

 Date: 30 May 2016


STAMPING OUT SMOKING AT THE FORUM

Smoking will be stamped out at The Forum Plaza, Pacific Highway St. Leonards on World No Tobacco Day, 31st May.

The Forum Plaza will go totally smoke-free on the day with signs informing visitors that smoking is not allowed anywhere. Smokers struggling to go smoke free will have help from NSW Quit advisors who’ll be on-hand between 11am and 2 pm with advice and resources on smoking cessation.

"Most of the plaza is already smoke-free due to the smoke-free outdoor public places laws," said Dr Andrew Montague, Executive Director of Operations, Northern Sydney Local Health District (NSLHD).

"However, working with The Forum management to extend the ban to cover all areas for the day is one way to further promote the health of our community."

‘Smoke-free areas’ will also be stamped on footpaths at the bus interchange outside the Forum.

"By painting our smoke-free area message literally at their feet, we think most commuters will get the message that smoking at bus stops is also against the law," explained NSLHD Health Promotion Director, Paul Klarenaar.

Willoughby Council fully supports the initiative, giving the health service permission to emblazon the Council owned footpath with the anti-smoking message.

Under the NSW Smoke-free Environment Act 2000, smoking has been banned at public transport stops since 2013 and around outdoor dining venues since 2015.

NSW Health inspectors can issue infringement notices (on the spot fines) under the Act. NSW Police Officers can also issue fines for smoking at transport stops under the Passenger Transport Regulation 2007 and the Smoke-free Environment Act 2000. An on the spot fine of $300 applies to anyone who fails to comply.

"Tobacco is our single biggest killer," said Paul.

"We understand that quitting is extremely hard, but we need to protect non-smokers in public locations where they can’t avoid harmful second-hand smoke," explained Paul.

For more information on the laws relating to smoking in outdoor public places, or to report a breach visit www.health.nsw.gov.au/smokefree

Contact the Quitline on 137848 if you need help to quit smoking.

ENDS

World No Tobacco Day (WNTD)

  • A World Health Organisation initiative observed globally each year on May 31
  • Encourages a 24-hour period of abstinence from all forms of tobacco consumption.
  • 3 in 4 Australian smokers report an interest in quitting – WNTD is a perfect time for "quit attempts".
  • Groups around the world, from local clubs to city councils to national governments, organise events each year to encourage communities to take a local approach to observing WNTD.


A photo opportunity is available at 12.30pm with Dr Andrew Montague and Mr Paul Klarenaar on location at St. Leonards Bus Interchange on Tuesday 31st May.

Media inquiries: Melissa Manning on 0418 603 728

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