The Government’s move to introduce plain tobacco packaging has been welcomed by Azhar Ali, Lancashire County Council’s cabinet member for health and wellbeing.
After writing to MPs encouraging them to support the introduction of standardised plain packaging, County Councillor Ali said this will make cigarettes less appealing to children:
“Smoking is the biggest killer here in Lancashire, said County Councillor Ali.
“The shocking fact is that two-thirds of people start smoking under the age of 18, the legal age of sale, so we want to do all we can to help make it less appealing to young people.
“Once they’re hooked, it becomes a habit for life with the new smokers replacing those who quit or die.
“The problem is that young people are exposed to a number of factors that make it appear fashionable and glamorous to smoke.
“The cigarette packet remains a way of marketing tobacco and smoking to children and young people and I fully support the move to bring in plain packaging.”
In Lancashire, 16% of young people aged between 14 and 17 smoke. This is higher than the national average of 11%.
Anyone wanting to stop smoking can call the Central, East and West Lancashire Quit Squad on 0800 328 6297 or the North Lancashire Stop Smoking Service on 01524 845145.