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Almost 9 out of 10 Scots want smoking banned near school playgrounds

Monday 30th May 2022

Asthma + Lung UK Scotland is urging the Scottish Government to follow the example set in Wales and ban smoking outside schools

Asthma + Lung UK Scotland is urging the Scottish Government to follow legislation enforced in Wales since March 2021 banning smoking around schools, playgrounds and other locations used by children.

Smoking remains the leading cause of preventable illness and death, and people who breathe in second-hand smoke regularly are more likely to get the same diseases as smokers, including lung cancer and heart disease.

Passive smoking is particularly dangerous children as their lungs are still growing and inhaling second-hand smoke increases their risk of developing asthma.

Over 9000 deaths are attributed to smoking in Scotland each year, accounting for 16% of all Scottish deaths.

Joseph Carter, Head of Asthma + Lung UK Scotland, said:

“Time and time again, we are finding that the overwhelming majority of people in Scotland want to see a ban of smoking near school playgrounds.

“To hit the target of less than 5% of adults smoking by 2034, we need to stop normalising smoking around children and protect their still-developing lungs from breathing in harmful second-hand smoke.

“We are urging the Scottish Government to follow the lead taken in Wales, and ban smoking around schools, playgrounds and other locations used by children.”

Natalie Homer is a Senior Research Technologist living in Edinburgh. Her son Isaac was 4 when he started to develop night-time coughing and was prescribed preventer and reliever inhalers. He didn’t have a severe asthma attack until he was 8, when he ended up in hospital for 5 days. He is now 15. She said:

“Isaac was diagnosed with asthma at a young age. Although his asthma is now under control, he will always avoid areas where there is cigarette smoke and if a barbeque or campfire is burning, he quickly notices the effect on his breathing.

“We should not have the air around our children – where they learn and play – being a threat to their health. For anyone where tobacco smoke is a trigger for an asthma attack then continuing to allow smoking in these spaces in Scotland is an accident waiting to happen.

“We can all play our part in reducing the risks of second-hand cigarette smoke and with so much public support, it seems the natural next step to follow the example set in Wales and ban smoking near schools and playgrounds.”

ENDS

For more information, please contact the press team on 0207 786 4949 or press@asthmaandlung.org.uk.

Methodology:

The research was conducted by Opinion Matters on behalf of Asthma + Lung Scotland, among a sample of 1,000 adults in Scotland aged 16+. The data was collected between 26.04.2022 – 03.05.2022. Opinion Matters abides by and employs members of the Market Research Society which is based on the ESOMAR principles.