New survey shows West Aussies want more smoke-free public spaces

Posted 5 Oct 2021.

We are calling on the State Government to create more smoke-free public spaces after a recent survey1 revealed that almost nine in 10 West Australians (both smokers and non-smokers) want access to more smoke-free environments in WA.

Our Cancer Prevention and Research Director, Melissa Ledger, said most respondents were keen to see a ban on smoking at family-friendly places including Rottnest, Kings Park and Elizabeth Quay, as well as public swimming pools, footpaths around schools and childcare centres, and within 10 metres of junior sporting events.

"The Make Smoking History team conducted a community survey in October 2020 to measure West Australian adults' attitudes towards smoking and tobacco control in WA," Ms Ledger said.

"We spoke to more than 1000 West Australians, and the overwhelming majority wanted more smoke-free areas created in WA.

"Because many of these public places are frequented by families it's imperative that action is taken to prevent children's exposure to these health dangers.

"We know that second-hand smoke increases the risk of health effects in children such as asthma, respiratory infections, and ear infections, and is even linked to behavioural problems and learning difficulties.

"Children and young people may be more likely to take up smoking when they see it as a normal behaviour among family and friends or the wider community.

"Research also indicates that creating smoke-free environments and reducing access to tobacco products help to support people who are trying to quit smoking and to those who have quit.

"Cancer Council WA is calling on the State Government to listen to the community and introduce stronger legislative reforms, including more smoke-free public spaces, to further protect the health of all West Aussies especially young people."


People who are thinking of starting their quit journey (or who would like to help someone to quit) can access support by:

• Contacting the Quitline for support from Quitline counsellors:
o Call the Quitline on 13 7848
o Text "call back" to 13 7848
o Chat online
o Request a call-back online
• Downloading the MyQuitBuddy app.
• Visiting the Make Smoking History website.
• Seeking advice and support from their GP, Aboriginal Health Worker, Telehealth service or pharmacist
• Visiting QuitCoach

Make Smoking History is an initiative of Cancer Council WA and proudly supported by the Department of Health WA and Healthway.

1 Lizama N & McDonald A. 2021. Attitudes towards smoking and tobacco control among Western Australian adults: A community survey, 2020. Perth, WA: Cancer Council Western Australia.

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