Debate: Should Canada follow New Zealand’s example and become smoke-free?
Don’t like inhaling second-hand cigarette smoke? You may want to move to New Zealand, where a 40 percent hike in
Don’t like inhaling second-hand cigarette smoke?
You may want to move to New Zealand, where a 40 percent hike in tobacco taxes over the next four years is just part of their plan to become smoke-free by 2025, according to the Associated Press.
In July, retailers will also be forced to remove cigarettes from displays.
But is it enough?
In Canada, Vancouver has banned smoking in all parks, sports fields, beaches, playgrounds and public golf courses. Ottawa recently followed suit and banned smokers from patios and all outdoor municipal properties.
Even with new bans in place, more graphic cigarette labels, and constant warnings of the health risks posed by smoking, second-hand smoke and even third-hand smoke, the fact remains: 17 percent of Canadians smoke.
According to the Canadian Cancer Society, lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in Canada. It is estimated that smoking is responsible for 30% of all cancer deaths and is related to more than 85% of lung cancer cases in Canada.
What do you think? Is New Zealand’s plan a smart one? Would you support legislation to make Canada smoke-free?
-Katharine Watts, Associate Web Editor