Scots smoking stats led to professor’s idea to ban smoking for anyone born after 2000
PROPOSALS to enforce a complete ban on cigarettes for anyone born after 2000 have been put forward as a way of creating a smoke-free generation.
Health officials in Tasmania are considering banning anyone born after the year 2000 from ever buying cigarettes as a way of “phasing out” cigarettes.
Once those born after 2000 turn 18, the legal age to buy cigarettes would be raised each year. The plan has already been unanimously passed by Tasmania’s upper house and is awaiting approval from its lower house.
Singapore-based Professor Jon Berrick, who came up with the idea, is reportedly lobbying health bosses in several countries, including Scotland.
He has based his some of his conclusions on Scotland’s dismal health statistics and believes this country would prove to be an ideal testing ground.
He told The Sun newspaper: “Tobacco accounts for five million premature deaths worldwide every year and in Scotland alone the figure is 13,000.
“That’s more than road deaths, murder, suicide, alcohol and drugs combined.
“The Royal College of Physicians says the nicotine in tobacco is more addictive than herion and cocaine.
“The great majority of new smokers are teenagers — they are easily trapped by marketing that targets them.
“Until now, the reaction of governments has been to restrict supply to people under a certain age, typically 16. In Scotland it’s 18. Ominously the tobacco industry has supported laws like that.
“There are flaws with under-age restrictions. They create a rites of passage effect where a 16 or 17-year- old thinks that by smoking they appear to be 18.”
He added: “The proposal is to name a future date after which there will be no new legal recipients of tobacco products.
“In Scotland that would be January 1, 2018. There would be a tobacco-free millennium generation who will grow up without the expectation that one day they will be allowed to buy cigarettes.”
The proposals have attracted criticism, with opponents saying it would be an abuse of human rights. Greg Barns, of Australian Lawyers Alliance, said: “If you want to attract a black market, this is the way to do it.”
The Tasmanian Tobacco Action Plan for 2011-2015 states: “Tobacco smoking remains the single greatest preventable cause of ill health and death in Australia. The prevalence of smoking in Tasmania remains higher than the national prevalence.”
The Scottish Government said it was actively looking at various measures, but stopped short of backing Prof Berrick’s idea.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Sunday 26 May 2013
Temperature: 9 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 15 mph
Wind direction: West
Temperature: 8 C to 12 C
Wind Speed: 18 mph
Wind direction: South