Celebrate being smokefree in Invercargill this World Smokefree Day, May 31
New Zealand is moving closer to being smokefree and this World Smokefree Day is the perfect time
to celebrate our smokefree environments, places and whānau, said Bridget Rodgers from WellSouth Primary Health
Organisation in Invercargill.
“More and more New Zealanders are becoming smokefree or not taking up smoking at all. The most
recent tobacco-use figures show 84% of New Zealanders do not smoke, which is 4% more than in 2008. Importantly, fewer
young people are starting to smoke with 96% of 15 to 17 year olds staying smokefree, which is a marked increase from 84%
a decade ago.”
The number of totally smokefree workplaces is also increasing. More and more businesses are going over and above the
legal requirements and declaring all workspaces – including work vehicles and outdoor areas – to be smokefree, and
helping employee’s access stop smoking support. Local authorities are also showing strong leadership by declaring public
places, spaces and events to be smokefree.
“All this action is creating a New Zealand where being smokefree is normal, whether it’s in public, at work, or at home
with whānau. All of us, especially young people, are influenced by those around us, so if we don’t see people smoking we
are less likely to smoke ourselves,” Ms Rodgers said.
“Here in Invercargill there are so many smokefree success stories I’d love to celebrate. I congratulate the Invercargill
City Council and Youth Council on creating a smokefree Central Business District.”
“Invercargill is just one area of New Zealand but similar action is happening all around the country. Collectively it
all moves the country closer to the Government’s goal of Smokefree Aotearoa 2025,” Ms Rodgers said.
“On May 31, World Smokefree Day, I encourage everyone to either celebrate being smokefree or encourage those who are not
smokefree to embrace the smokefree lifestyle.
For more information contact Bridget Rodgers, WellSouth Primary Health organisation, 214 6436.
• For more information on World Smokefree Day, go to: www.worldsmokefreeday.org.nz
• World Smokefree Day was created by the World Health Organization in 1987. In other countries it is known as
World No Tobacco Day.