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Smoking and Poverty

Jul 2021
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This analysis of national data finds that 3 in 5 of all households containing smokers living in poverty live in the North and Midlands while fewer than 1 in 5 are in London and the South East. The link between smoking and disadvantage is well established, but this new analysis throws light on how the impact of smoking on local communities is exacerbated when household incomes are also lower.

Research was undertaken using national Government data on households. Nationally, one in five (21%) of smoking households in the UK were living below the poverty line, amounting to a million households. However, when tobacco expenditure was included in the assessment of poverty this increased to nearly a third (32%) equivalent to 1.5 million households.