Government should bring in a ban now

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Dear Editor: It is recognized that tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable illness, disability and premature death in Canada.

As a society we are making inroads in rates of smoking, but the most vulnerable among us are still starting to smoke in unacceptable numbers.  

The latest National Youth Smoking Survey revealed that 52 per cent of high school students in Canada who had used tobacco products in the previous 30 days had used flavoured products.

The Federal Tobacco Act prohibits flavours, other than menthol, in cigarettes and cigarillos (cigars weighing less than 1.4 grams).  However, some tobacco companies have found a way around the legislation by increasing the weight of cigarillos to more than 1.4 grams.  This allows them to add flavours, such as chocolate, mint and strawberry, to the product.

These flavours are immensely appealing to youth and young adults, thereby increasing the likelihood that they will start smoking.

Provinces throughout Canada are considering a ban on all flavoured tobacco.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation strongly urges the government of Newfoundland and Labrador to act now and introduce legislation banning these products.

Swift action is needed to product our youth from the tragic health consequences of tobacco use.

Heather Percy, BN RN, director, Health Promotion and Resuscitation Programs, Newfoundland and Labrador Heart and Stroke Foundation

Organizations: Dear Editor, Heart and Stroke Foundation

Geographic location: Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador

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Recent comments

  • Too Funny
    February 08, 2014 - 16:35

    " a pack and a half a day". What kind of job would someone have that allowed them to spend that much time smoking and posting multiple comments on one story.

  • John Hickey
    February 08, 2014 - 07:00

    Well Glenda, it looks like you got your letters printed. I 'rarely' do.. I agree in principle to your suggestion of shutting down all the manufacturing plants and banning it straight across the board. However, since that seems a bit unlikely, the government should ease up on it's policies. I don't buy into the second-hand-smoke theory.. I also am not convinced that smoking causes all the problems that doctors claim it does. Death rates are virtually unchanged in the last 100 years, yet we're told that the numbers of tobacco users has dropped considerably. If that's the case, shouldn't fewer people be dying ? It's all lies perpetrated by the big insurance companies looking for a convenient scapegoat.. For the record, I'm a non smoker and a human rights activist..

  • Glenda
    February 06, 2014 - 11:16

    Again, Stop complaining about cigs and how it hurts everyone if the government is not willing to shut down the tobacco companies. I am a smoker and I wish and pray to God they shut down the tobacco companies. The government will not shut it down but they will continue to ban this and ban that. They stand to lose too much money by shutting down the tobacco companies mean time they pretend they really care about the public. Get real, they don't care about anyone but themselves, if they did, they will shut down every tobacco company that is out there and will not worry about the the money they will be losing because of it. I bet this one will not be release either will it. This is the third comment I have written, lets see if this one will be released.

  • Glenda
    February 06, 2014 - 09:07

    What the government should do is stop putting ban on this and ban on that. They should just ban cigs period. I am a smoker myself and I wish the government will ban all cig factories. This will stop a lot of health problems due to smoking. The smokers then will have no choice to quit due to no more cigs to buy.

  • Glenda
    February 06, 2014 - 07:12

    I am a smoker. I smoke about a pack and a half a day. Banning the flavored cigs is a great idea and what is another great idea is ban smoking all together although yes I am a smoker. If there are no cigs to buy anymore then that will also stop everyone from smoking. I will have no choice to quit then if there isn't anymore to buy. I say the government won't do that due to it will cost them to lose far too much. This is not about money, this is about saving people lives and saving on health issues. Lives are far greater then money any day. Money is the rude of all people. I really wish they will ban cigs and be no more. Put a stop to all cigs making. Close down the tobacco plants. This will solve all problems in smoking.