Youth smoking hits all-time low in NZ

Morning Talk 15/02/2018
Photo credit: Getty images

Young New Zealanders are not that keen to take a puff on a cigarette, new research shows.

Results from the Action for Smokefree 2025 (ASH) survey, released on Wednesday, show that 2.2 percent of year 10 students smoke daily, compared with 15.2 percent when a similar survey was done in 1999.

The number of students who have never even taken a puff of a cigarette has increased to nearly 80 percent, from 55 percent a decade ago.

Boyd Broughton, ASH Programme Manager, joined Mark Sainsbury to discuss the decline in smoking among youths.

Mr Broughton described the decline in smoking for year 10 students as one of the big success stories of the smokefree movement in New Zealand.

“…Much of this success has been down to the hard work and commitment of schools to being smokefree.”

Schools offer students various sporting events, cultural events, intellectional events, all which Mr Broughton points out are “promoted as smoke-free”.

There were still some concerning numbers, Mr Broughton said, with Maori students showing higher smoking rates than their European counterparts - 5.9 per cent versus one percent.

Listen to the full interview with Boyd Broughton above.

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Morning Talk with Mark Sainsbury, weekdays from 9am-noon on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the ROVA app on Android and iPhone.