Ban smoking around children in NSW
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I am calling for the NSW Government to change the law to ban people smoking around children.
We all know how dangerous passive smoking is. There are at least 250 chemicals in passive smoke that are toxic, including more than 50 that are known to cause cancer.
Research proves that children exposed to second-hand smoke are at higher risk of:
· Sudden Infant Death Syndrome
· Middle ear infections
· Meningococcal disease
· Impaired learning
· Slower growth
· Behavioural changes
What’s been done?
Progress has been made by banning adults smoking in cars with children, near play equipment, in outdoor dining areas and near pedestrian entries/exits from hospitality venues.
However, this is not enough, the next logical step is to completely ban children being exposed to second-hand smoke. People should be fined if they are found smoking next to children.
Why I care (and you should too)
The other day outside of my local shopping centre I witnessed three adults smoking next to a toddler in a pram who they were caring for. The smoking was blowing into the child’s face, and the adults had no regard for their actions. As a mother with a two-year-old, I felt disgusted and appalled that the poor child had to sit there and be exposed to these toxic chemicals. It was completely unfair!
I know this issue is more prevalent in disadvantaged communities, but it is still happening everywhere and it’s 2017. We’ve come a long way as smoking has been steadily decreasing over time, but there’s still more work to be done.
I believe exposing babies and children to ongoing passive smoke is a form of child abuse. This view might sound outrageous, but it’s not. When you read papers written by those in the medical profession highlighting the effects of infants being exposed to second-hand smoke you will know what I mean. It can’t be ignored.
Did you know that the infant mortality rate for children of smokers is 58% higher than the rate for children of non-smokers?
Children need to be kept safe and have a right to breathe clean air. The government needs to intervene and protect our little ones who can't speak up!
We intervene when children are neglected due to alcohol or drug addictions, and we should intervene when children are exposed to ongoing second-hand smoke.
· The NSW Government should change the law to ban smoking around children.
· People should be fined if they are found smoking next to children.
· Parents who expose their children to ongoing second-hand smoke should be held accountable and also provided with ample education and support to quit, including counselling.
· In instances where children are suffering severe health effects from their parents’ smoking, including ongoing lung infections and hospitalisations, the NSW Government should take measures to provide a safer living environment for these children.
How can you help?
1. Sign the petition
If you care about the health of our children, take ten seconds out of your busy schedule to sign my petition to help ban smoking around children. If we get enough signatures we can demand the government’s attention to make real change.
2. Spread the word
Please share this with your family and friends. Use the hashtag #speakupforourkids
Thank you for your support.
Nina Belle, Judgy Mummy
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