ASH Daily News for 6 June 2018



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UK

  • Stoke on Trent: Illicit tobacco worth £90k seized in raids on three city shops
  • Smokers fined for dropping cigarette butts in Peterborough city centre

International

  • USA: Senate Democrats aim to eliminate tobacco imagery in movies
  • Austria: New research suggests prostate cancer survival odds worse for smokers

UK

Stoke on Trent: Illicit tobacco worth £90k seized in raids on three city shops

A haul of illegal tobacco and cigarettes with a street value of more than £90,000 has been seized following raids on three Stoke-on-Trent shops.

More than 10,000 packs of cigarettes and 17kg of hand-rolling tobacco were found after trading standards conducted an investigation on the back of information received from the public.

Councillor Randy Conteh, chair of Smokefree Stoke-on-Trent, said: “This is another fantastic result for our trading standards team following on from a similar operation in February, which saw £80,000 worth of illegal tobacco confiscated from five shops in the city.”

Source: Stoke on Trent Live, 5 June 2018

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Smokers fined for dropping cigarette butts in Peterborough city centre

More than a dozen smokers caught dropping cigarette butts in Peterborough city centre have been fined at court. A total of 14 people were handed a bill of £440 each by Peterborough Magistrates Court after they were caught by officers dropping their cigarettes on the floor.

All 14 were caught at the beginning of August and were given the chance to pay an £80 fixed penalty notice – however they still had not paid up, and the cases were brought to court. None of the 14 turned up for the hearing, or indicated a plea by post.

They were all fined £220, ordered to pay costs of £180 and a £30 victim surcharge – which goes to a general pool of money to help all victims of crime.

Source: Peterborough Today, 5 June 2018

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International

USA: Senate Democrats aim to eliminate tobacco imagery in movies

Several Democratic senators are encouraging the new head of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPPA) to ensure “responsible” practices when it comes to displaying use of tobacco in films – a plea they believe will help stop young people from taking up smoking.

In a letter sent to MPPA CEO Charles Rivkin, the senators detail what they say is the strong correlation between on-screen smoking in films and youth smoking rates. A 2012 study by the U.S. Surgeon General cited in the letter finds “a causal relationship between depictions of smoking in the movies and initiation among young people.”

The MPAA is responsible for assigning ratings to films and, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the association provides a “smoking label” for some films that portray smoking – but fails to label 89 percent of movies that do.

“Although evidence connecting smoking imagery to youth smoking initiation is strong, MPAA has yet to take meaningful action to discourage tobacco imagery in films or effectively warn viewers and parents of tobacco’s presence in a movie,” the letter states.

Source: abc News, 5 June 2018

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Austria: New research suggests prostate cancer survival odds worse for smokers

Prostate cancer patients who smoke are more likely to have tumours return, spread to other parts of the body, and become fatal than nonsmokers, a new study suggests.

Researchers examined data from previous studies with a total of 22,549 men with prostate cancer that hadn’t spread to other parts of the body. The cancers were treated with either surgery or radiation. Overall, nearly one in five were current smokers. The rest were either former smokers or had never smoked.

The researchers tracked half the men for at least six years. During follow-up, compared to men who never smoked, current smokers were 40 percent more likely to have tumours return after treatment and more than twice as likely to have cancer spread beyond the prostate. Smokers were also 89 percent more likely to die from cancer.

“Prostate cancer diagnosis, even when it is not associated with tobacco smoking, is a teachable moment for patients to quit smoking,” said senior study author Dr. Shahrokh Shariat of the Medical University of Vienna in Austria.

“Former smoking was associated with higher risk of relapse, but not with spread or cancer-specific death, which underlines the importance of smoking cessation in improving disease outcome,” Shariat said. In fact, he added, men who had stopped smoking more than 10 years earlier “were not significantly different than patients who had never smoked.”

Source: Reuters, 5 June 2018

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