Cancer Focus NI has called on all councils to follow Mid and East Antrim’s example and make their play parks ‘smoke-free’ zones.
The Smoke-Free Play Park Campaign has been rolled out across all 69 play parks in the Mid and East Antrim area.
Gerry McElwee, head of cancer prevention, Cancer Focus NI, said: “Congratulations to Mid and East Antrim for being the first council to launch this very important campaign which is aimed at protecting children and young people from exposure to smoking. We fully support this extension of smoke-free areas.
“Smoking is the single greatest cause of preventable illness and premature death. Sadly, one in every two smokers die early because of their habit. We know that children who regularly see adults smoke are much more likely to try smoking.
“We firmly believe that this move could help protect children’s health and reduce their perception that smoking is normal behaviour. It is vital that we can take every step possible to try and protect yet another generation from this deadly product.”
Cancer Focus NI works with schools encouraging children not to smoke. Schools can sign up by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 028 9066 3281. More information is available on www.cancerfocusni.org