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Anti-smoking ads launched

2nd January 2007

10082006_smoking_in_cafe1.jpgThe government has launched its New Year anti-smoking campaign with a hard-hitting advert.

In the run up to the ban on smoking in public places from 1 July, the thought-provoking advert will run for five weeks in a bid to shock smokers into quitting.  The ad shows smokers being violently seized by a fish-hook and dragged to traditional smoking spots.  The government says its campaign highlights how addictive and controlling smoking really is.

The ads, in which one female is seen being dragged by a fish-hook through her lip, will be shown on TV, the internet and billboards.  Ministers hope the campaign will be an encouragement to those planning to quit the habit as part of their New Year resolutions.  Public Health Minister Caroline Flint said, ‚ÄúSmoking is not just a habit, it is an addiction. The nicotine in cigarettes is a powerful and fast-acting drug which after entering a smoker's bloodstream, affects their brain. It produces a nicotine rush which many interpret as pleasure, but in reality is simply the relief of satisfying a craving for nicotine."

It is well known that the nicotine in cigarette smoke can be as addictive as heroin and crack cocaine and smoking is now recognised as a powerful addiction.  It is thought that a quarter of the adult population in the UK smokes and the average British smoker consumes 14 cigarettes a day.  Half of all smokers will be killed by their habit and smoking is currently responsible for 114,000 deaths annually.

The government says the new campaign is not just about shocking people; the adverts will include information on how to contact NHS smoking cessation services in a bid to help more people to quit.

 

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