In a Westminster debate, Barbara has called for the Conservative-led Government to change its policy and introduce standardised packaging for cigarettes. She said that making this change would help stop children and young people in Salford from starting smoking, as standard packs are seen as less attractive.
Cancer Research UK has estimated that nearly 1,000 children start smoking in Salford every year.
More than one in four people smoke in Salford, much higher than the England average of one in five. Smoking is the biggest cause of early death in the UK.
Those who smoke long-term have 10 years less life expectancy than non-smokers and suffer from smoking-related diseases.
Speaking after the Westminster debate on the issue, Barbara said:
“Cigarette packaging is the last legal form of tobacco advertising in the UK, as we have now banned other forms of advertising. Standardised packaging was introduced in Australia last year and studies there have shown that packaging does have an influence on the way young people see smoking”
“It seems clear that bringing in standardised cigarette packs would help in the fight against starting smoking, which is why I believe they should be introduced in the UK.”
“The Conservative-led Government recently made a policy U-turn on this important issue. While they do nothing, thousands of children and young people are starting smoking and a possible life-long addiction leading to illness and early death. A Labour Government would follow the example set by Australia and introduce standardised packs.”