The Health and Wellbeing Committee of the Westmorland and Furness Council in the United Kingdom has thrown its support behind the government’s proposed “Smoke-Free Generation” plan. These measures aim to reduce the number of smokers to below 5% of the population by the year 2030.
The government’s recommendations to decrease smoking include criminalizing the sale of tobacco products to anyone born on or after January 1, 2009, and restricting the flavors and descriptions of e-cigarettes to eliminate those appealing to children.
The proposed government plan also involves regulating the display of vaping products in retail stores to keep them out of the sight of children and prevent them from being attracted to such products. There is also consideration of limiting the sale of disposable e-cigarettes, given the increase in their use among children.
Katrina Stephens, the Director of Public Health for Westmorland and Furness Council, previously stated that smoking remains the leading cause of premature death in the region.
According to the UK Department of Public Health, smoking contributes to 84% of lung cancer deaths and increases the risk of stroke by at least 50%. The government has set a target for England to achieve a smoke-free status by 2030, meaning that by this year, the smoking population should be less than 5%.
Stephens noted that to achieve this goal in Westmorland and Furness, approximately 10,000 individuals in the region will need to quit smoking, with no new smokers starting the habit.