ASH Daily News 6 October



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UK

  • Hackney Council pension fund increases investment in tobacco firms
  • Smoking at work: what can your boss do to help you quit?
  • PMI’s Heat not Burn product prominent at Conservative Party Conference

International

  • Malawi: Tobacco losing its allure for farmers
  • Indian one-man band blows, strums and sings against smoking

Link of the Week

  • Health matters: preventing ill health from alcohol and tobacco

 

UK
Hackney Council pension fund increases investment in tobacco firms

It has been reported that Hackney Council pension fund owns £26.6 million of shares in tobacco companies, a figure which has doubled over the past six years.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of Action on Smoking and Health, said: “A growing number of big investment funds like AXA are disinvesting from tobacco stocks as they no longer think they are an appropriate investment, nor that they are needed in a balanced portfolio to protect the interests of beneficiaries.

“And some local authority pension funds like Greater Manchester have also disinvested.

“So it’s a strange time for Hackney Council’s pension fund to expand its investments in tobacco, particularly given the council’s legal duty to promote the health of local people.”

Source: Hackney Citizen, 5 October 2017

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Smoking at work: what can your boss do to help you quit?

A 2014 study by the Centre for Economics and Business Research found that UK business lose around £8.7 billion as a result of cigarette breaks. Equally, employers can be well-placed to help staff quit.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of ASH said, “Employers can do a lot to help their employees quit smoking, and it’s in their interests to do so. Smokers not only lose time through smoking breaks, they also take more time off sick.”

“By providing support and encouragement, including where possible onsite help to quit, employers can improve the health and wellbeing of their staff while creating a more profitable and productive workplace.”

Source: West Sussex Today, 5 October 2017

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PMI’s Heat not Burn product prominent at Conservative Party Conference

Philip Morris International (PMI) exhibited at Conservative Party Conference, promoting its Heat not Burn product, ‘iQos’.

The company’s stand was emblazoned with the words ‘smoke free’ as the company ostensibly attempts to position itself as moving towards a smokefree future.

The UK Vaping Industry Association, an association which includes members such as Japan Tobacco International and British American Tobacco, was also present at the conference, participating in a fringe event hosted by the Institute of Economic Affairs. The event consisted of a debate entitled ‘Vaping: Could Brexit be good for our health?’, with some panellists arguing that exiting the EU could allow regulations under the EU Tobacco Products Directive, which also regulates e-cigarettes, to be dropped.

Source: PR Week, 5 October 2017

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International
Malawi: Tobacco losing its allure for farmers

With tobacco revenues declining amid global efforts to control tobacco, many Malawian farmers are choosing to stop growing tobacco in favour of other crops, according to the CEO of the Tobacco Association of Malawi (TAMA).

The CEO said that even TAMA has a diversification plan looking at the possibility of moving into other crops such as soy beans and sunflower.

Source: Nyasa Times, 4 October 2017

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Indian one-man band blows, strums and sings against smoking

Gladson Peter, an Indian one-man band, has become famous for performing to raise awareness about the dangers of secondhand smoke.

As a teenager the musician lost part of his lung due to tuberculosis. Following the disease, doctors warned that his symptoms could be exacerbated by secondhand smoke, and Peter feared his ability to play wind instruments would be curtailed.

Source: Daily Mail, 6 October 2017

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Link of the Week
Health matters: preventing ill health from alcohol and tobacco

Public Health England and NHS England have published Health matters: preventing ill health from alcohol and tobacco, a professional resource which makes the case for why NHS providers should implement the “Preventing ill health by risky behaviours – alcohol and tobacco” Commissioning for Quality and Innovation (CQUIN).

The resources include presentation slides and Twitter graphics.

Source: Gov.uk, 4 October 2017

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ASH Daily News comprises digests of published news on smoking-related topics. ASH is not responsible for the content of external websites. ASH does not necessarily endorse the material contained in this bulletin.