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Smoke-free Future

by
May 29, 2024
dont puff away to glory not just your lungs smoking could be injurious to leg muscles too

As the world prepares to observe World No Tobacco Day on May 31, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir has taken a welcome step towards tobacco use prevention by constituting an empowered committee to implement Article 5.3 of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). This move aims to protect public health policies from the influence of the tobacco industry, promoting a healthier, tobacco-free environment. First and foremost, strengthening tobacco control policies is crucial. Governments must implement and enforce comprehensive tobacco control policies, including bans on tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship, as well as increased taxes on tobacco products. These measures have proven effective in reducing tobacco consumption and promoting a healthier environment. Raising awareness about the dangers of tobacco use is another vital step. Public awareness campaigns must be launched to educate people about the harmful effects of tobacco on health, including the risk of cancer, heart disease, and respiratory problems. Additionally, the impact of tobacco on the environment, including deforestation, water pollution, and litter, must be highlighted to encourage sustainable practices. Protecting youth from the tobacco industry’s predatory marketing tactics is essential. Governments must take measures to prevent the targeting of children and adolescents, including restrictions on flavored tobacco products and e-cigarettes. Moreover, education and awareness programs must be implemented in schools to educate young people about the risks of tobacco use and the importance of a healthy lifestyle. On World No Tobacco Day, school children should be actively involved in campaigns to raise awareness about the harmful effects of tobacco use and second-hand smoke exposure. This can be done through various activities such as organising rallies, marches, and awareness programs in schools and communities. Children can also participate in poster-making, essay-writing and slogan competitions to express their creativity and spread the message of the harmful effects of tobacco. Additionally, schools can invite healthcare professionals to educate children about the risks of tobacco use and the importance of a healthy lifestyle. By involving school children in these campaigns, we can empower them to become agents of change and encourage them to spread the message to their families and communities. Encouraging quit tobacco initiatives is also critical. Support systems and resources must be made available to help tobacco users quit, including counseling, nicotine replacement therapy, and hotlines. Governments and healthcare providers must work together to provide accessible and effective quit tobacco programs. Regular monitoring and enforcement of tobacco control laws are crucial to prevent the tobacco industry from circumventing regulations. Governments must ensure that tobacco companies comply with laws and regulations, and impose penalties for non-compliance. Finally, sustainable practices must be encouraged to mitigate the harmful impact of the tobacco industry on the environment. Eco-friendly packaging, responsible waste management, and sustainable agriculture practices must be promoted to reduce the environmental footprint of tobacco production and consumption. The empowered committee constituted by the Government of Jammu and Kashmir is a step in the right direction, and we must continue to work together to address this critical public health issue.


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