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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Tasmanian tobacco bill to ban smoking for youth

The Tasmanian government is considering ruling out banning tobacco sales to people born after 2000. Independent Legislative Council member Ivan Dean was preparing the private member's bill and said the aim was not to penalise the young smoker but to clamp down on the supply side.

The 2000 Smoke-Free Generation initiative had secured the backing of Tasmania's independent upper house, the Legislative Council and will be scrutinised by the state government.

The initiative, brought to Australia by a University of Singapore academic, meant that those who turn 18 in 2018 would be unable to purchase cigarettes.
Penalties would be imposed on anyone caught supplying tobacco to the "tobacco-free generation" whether a retailer or an individual.

The necessary legislative change would require an amendment to the Health Act.
The Tasmanian branch of the Australian Medical Association has backed the move and Imperial Tobacco Australia has been meeting with members of the Legislative Council this week to outline the industry's case against a push to ban tob­acco sales to younger generations.

The maker of Gauloises cigarettes online, Imperial Tobacco head of corporate affairs, Andrew Gregson, said Mr Dean needed to learn from history that prohibition doesn't work and leads to black markets and criminal activity.

In a statement, Mr Gregson said:
 “Mr Dean's proposal is neither sensible nor practical. If he is successful, he will merely punish Tasmanian retailers. Tobacco consumers will either buy from interstate or - worse still - move to the illicit market that is already a problem in Australia.”

He said the ban would hit Tasmanian retailers hardest, because people would be forced to buy online from interstate. He said the ban could seriously affect up to 1000 Tasmanian retailers for whom tobacco sales were a significant proportion of their turnover.

Closer to a third, or 30.6 per cent, of 18-24 year old Tasmanians smoke, according to Tasmania Medicare Local. The Island state had the second highest rate of smokers in the country, behind the Northern Territory. It is understood Singapore and Finland are the only other jurisdictions considering such a law.
If the bill is approved, Australia would become the first country to ban tobacco sales to some generations and not others.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Framingham Wants to Raise Tobacco Buying Age to 21

In order to prevent youth from smoking, the Board of Health wants to increase the minimum age to buy cigarettes in Framingham, Massachusetts, from 18 to 21. The Board would consider the proposal on its meeting at the beginning of the week when they would discuss modifications to city’s tobacco regulations. The city also wants to limit sale of e-cigarettes … Continue reading

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Jon Stewart's advice to Cruz: 'Start smoking'

Jon Stewart has some advice for President Obama: “Stop smoking.” The “Daily Show” host gave his presidential recommendation to The New York Times at a Sunday night screening of “Rosewater” at the Newseum in downtown Washington.

While Obama has said in the past that he kicked the habit years ago — he quipped last year, “I haven’t had a cigarette in six years ... that’s because I’m scared of my wife" — Stewart had a different suggestion for Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), telling the newspaper the lawmaker should “start smoking Marlboro cigarettes online.”

Beyond doling out vice advice, the 51-year-old comedian offered his take on today’s Internet culture, saying it hasn’t turned viewers into “blithering idiots,” as some social critics argue. But journalists, Stewart said, are contributing to “a sense of despair” by creating a false sense of urgency in their reporting.

“I think it’s disingenuous when people say they get the news from us ["The Daily Show"]," Stewart told PBS “NewsHour” host and the screening’s moderator, Gwen Ifill, when asked about the country’s disenchantment with journalists. “It wouldn’t make a whole lot of sense, what we do, without a basis [in fact],” Stewart said.

“Everybody has got this nostalgic view of how the country used to work as informed citizens. We’ve been idiots for a very long time. You know, on our hair dryers it says, ‘Don’t use this in bathtub.’ It’s not as though we were a society of nuclear physicists back then,” the first-time director continued.

The traditional thinking is that “with pop music and the Internet, we suddenly turned into blithering idiots,” Stewart said.

“I reject this idea that we are in a new age of incoherence. I think there is more information out there; it just needs to be contextualized.”

The media, Stewart contended, creates “a false urgency and forget to contextualize all of the information that is being processed and therefore contribute to a sense of despair and unnerving nature of what’s happening.”

“Rosewater,” Stewart’s first foray into directing and dramatic screenwriting, based on a memoir by reporter Maziar Bahari about his time in an Iranian prison, opens in theaters Friday.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Holbrook Raises Age to Buy Cigarettes to 19

Authorities in Holbrook, New York, prohibited sale of synthetic marijuana in town and increased legal age to buy tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, to 19. The change comes into effect from January, 1, 2015. Last week, the Holbrook Board of Health with the majority of votes adopted a law which increases the age from 18 to 19 to legally buy tobacco … Continue reading

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Westminster Considers Banning Sale of Tobacco Products

At the beginning of the week Westminster Board of Health organized public hearings on the proposal to prohibit sale of tobacco products in the town. There came 70 people to express their opinion on the subject. It turned out the the majority of them is against the ban. Selectmen cannot participate in voting for the proposal but they attentively listened … Continue reading

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

MA town should go through with measure against smoking


The  sleepy town of Westminster in central Massachusetts might soon become the first in the nation to ban the sale of tobacco products. Though ambitious, the effort is certainly admirable as the first step in a series of actions that could truly make a difference.

Policies in the past have succeeded in curbing rates of smoking, but this ban, if passed, will get to the root of it all — tobacco itself. Since a study by the U.S. Surgeon General determined that there was a causal relationship between excessive cigarette smoking and lung cancer in 1956, there’s been significant progress. According to the Surgeon General, smoking rates among adults and teens are less than half what they were in 1964. And yet, 42 million American adults and 3 million middle and high school students still smoke. To this day, smoking is linked to about one in five deaths annually, remaining the single largest cause of preventable disease and death in the United States.

So, though smoking OK Blue in restaurants, workplaces and other public areas is often prohibited to protect nonsmokers from secondhand smoke, laws need to shift to help smokers themselves quit and prevent the initiation of tobacco use. The proposed ban would do just that.

For those who need an extra push to start quitting, the measure would help trigger awareness and motivation. The urgency is definitely there.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, smoking is linked to stroke, coronary heart disease and 90 percent of lung cancer deaths. Those who smoke are about 25 times more likely to get lung cancer than people who do not smoke. Smoking can cause cancer almost anywhere in the body, from the liver to the colon.

Besides those numbers though, the emerging market appealing to youth poses another threat. With 69-cent bubblegum-flavored cigars and dissolvable smokeless tobacco that resembles Tic Tac candies, the industry needs to be stopped.

Small businesses will take a hit if the ban is passed, but if this fight against smoking plans to move forward, that’s inevitable. According to the Inquistr, store owner Brian Vincent, who claims that about 5 percent of sales comes from tobacco products, said, “It’s going to send business five minutes this way or five minutes that way — no one’s going to quit.” He started a petition against the ban and has collected more than 800 signatures.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Adebamowo: Matters Arising On Tobacco Control Legislation

THE senate committee on health last week held the public hearing to repeal the tobacco control law of 1990 and to enact the National Tobacco control Bill 2012 to provide for the regulation, and control of production, manufacturing, sale, advertising, promotion and sponsorship of tobacco and cheapest cigarettes in Nigeria.

As we know, tobacco control is about reducing or completely eradicating, the effects of tobacco smoke on the consumer. The question, however is that, has the war on tobacco smoking control failed or worked? it is pertinent that all proponents for and against tobacco control policies should sit down and accurately evaluate if the tobacco control policies or the drive for its implementation in several countries globally failed or succeed.

Different schools of thought have begun to emerge to look critically at the push for several policies and the appropriate strategies which may be deemed effective for those whom the policies wish to affect. World Health Organisation (WHO) states that ‘the tobacco epidemic is one of the biggest public health threats the world has ever faced, killing nearly six million people a year.

 At the public hearing, it was expressly declared that the bill is not meant to ban tobacco, but to set up a legal framework that will allow for effective control of the tobacco industry. According to the chairman Senate committee on health and the sponsor of the bill, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa representing Delta North in the upper chamber of the National Assembly, there is the need to control the distribution and supply chain stakeholders.

“There is need to control the distribution and ensure that those in its supply chains are licensed in order to monitor their compliance to the regulatory framework. We are not out to ban tobacco or send people to the labour market. The industry operators only need to know that and comply with regulation, as it is not our intention to drive the operators away but put laws in place in order for them for them to operate in a responsible manner.” He stated