Public Health Celebrates World No Tobacco Day with 2014 Community Awards

Written by admin, May 29, 2014

May 29, 2014 – Champions for a Tobacco-Wise Peterborough Recognized for their Commitment to Protecting Public Health

The impressive achievements of local individuals and organizations to protect residents from tobacco’s ill-effects were the focus of three awards handed out today by Peterborough Public Health in celebration of World No Tobacco Day (May 31, 2014).

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Rosana Salvaterra announced eleven recipients in three categories at a special event at Thomas A. Stewart Secondary School (TASSS) today. “Champions for a Tobacco-Wise Peterborough Awards” were presented in recognition of tobacco use prevention in the following areas : Exceeding the Standards Award, Cessation or Prevention Award, and Community Leader Award. 

Click here for this year’s Champion for Tobacco-Wise Award recipients.

“Our champions here today are carrying on the legacy of public health started 50 years ago to end everyone’s exposure to smoking in public spaces,” said Dr. Salvaterra. “Peterborough has been a leader in this regard, being one of the first municipalities to ban smoking in public parks, and to uphold laws banning smoking on school property.  Now the harder work is underway to prevent tobacco use in other shared spaces, to denormalize tobacco use, and to make Ontario home to the lowest smoking rates in the country.”

TASSS was selected as the venue to highlight its participation in an innovative pilot program that supported the development of youth cessation groups in six schools, giving the students the skills to pursue a smoke-free life.

Every year the World Health Organization marks May 31 as World No Tobacco Day.  It is a day set aside both to acknowledge the gains made in tobacco control worldwide, but also a day to highlight how much more work there is to be done to prevent the use of commercial tobacco products.

“Municipalities and organizations in both Peterborough City and County have been at the forefront of progressive tobacco control for the better part of a decade,” noted Dr. Salvaterra. “In many instances, groups and other jurisdictions are looking to Peterborough for advice on how to replicate what we’ve been able to achieve,” she said . 

Locally, World No Tobacco Day is used to recognize champions that have made a tangible difference to the health of our community. All of the recipients are making great advances to clear the air of secondhand smoke, help people quit smoking, or encourage youth to stay tobacco-free.

“While there is much to be celebrated about our community’s collective achievements, there is still much to be done,” added Dr. Salvaterra.

Tobacco remains the leading cause of preventable disease and death in Ontario.  Each year, smoking and exposure to second-hand-smoke results in 13,000 deaths in Ontario. Locally, the use of commercial tobacco products kills approximately 286 Peterborough residents each year.

For more information on smoke-free policies, tobacco-free living or supports for quitting smoking, please contact Peterborough Public Health at 705-743-1000 or visit the Smoke-Free Places web page on www.peterboroughpublichealth.ca.

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For further information, please contact:

Keith Beecroft
Health Promoter, Tobacco Use Prevention
Peterborough Public Health
705-743-1000, ext. 238