Health Minister Jonathan Coleman has today welcomed Auckland Council’s commitment to the local Healthy Families NZ initiative by removing sugar sweetened beverages from vending machines at their leisure sites.

Home Grown tobacco claims made by Industry are all about protecting profits.
It is common practice for the Tobacco Industry to play on fears about illicit trade as they have done recently here in New Zealand with home grown tobacco.

The New Zealand government’s consultation on the draft standardised tobacco product packaging will close at the end of July.

An article that many of us in Tobacco Control in New Zealand are reflecting on.

This year marks 20 years of service delivery for Hāpai Te Hauora (Hāpai) a Māori public health provider who has led both national and regional work to increase health outcomes across all population groups, with a particular focus on reducing inequalities. This year also marks the Ministry of Health’s announcement that Hāpai will be the holder of the new National Tobacco Control Advocacy Service.

Radio New Zealand (02/06/2016) – Hāpai and Whānau Whānui Hui A Tau Interview (Hone Ngata for Raukura and Antony Thomson for Ngāti Whātua)

NewsHub (30/05/2016): An Auckland tobacco researcher says cigarette tax discriminates against Maori, who have the highest rates of smoking. It comes after the Government decided to continue increasing the tax on tobacco by 10 percent for the next four years.

Waatea TV (30/05/2016): Interview with Professor Marewa Glover, Zoe Martin-Hawke, Jonathan, Willie Jackson (Host), Annette King and Dame Tariana Turia by phone. (30/05/2016) – Continuation of Single Cigarette Community Action group that Hāpai Te Hauora supported in 2015

Smoking prevalence remains high amongst people using mental health and addictions services, with a prevailing attitude that they are already under enough stress and smoking is a great way to relieve that stress. This attitude was fostered by a past culture where staff and service users smoking together was the norm and cigarettes were seen as a beneficial tool to treatment. It would take a team of brave souls indeed to implement a mass quit smoking challenge within this environment.