MOH concerned over tobacco smoke exposure

second hand smokeThe Ministry of Health (MOH) is expressing concerns over the exposure of non-smokers to the dangers of tobacco smoke.

That information was revealed by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Environment, Helen Royer on the Observance of World No Tobacco Day 2015, observed every year on May 31.

According to her, a 2009 survey shows that six of every 10 non smoking students and one of every five adults are exposed to tobacco smoke in public spaces in Dominica.

The survey also shows that one in every 10 adults smoke and that smoking among students 13 to 15 years stands at one in four.

“The Ministry of Health is concerned about the high rate of exposure of non smokers to the dangers of tobacco smoke,” she said.

Royer stated that clearly the youths of Dominica are at risk to diseases both caused by their own actions and from the actions of others.

“Conscious of the need to protect the health of the island’s population, government has acceded to the request of the Ministry of Health and Environment to increase the tax on tobacco products,” she said. “And from 2012 there was an increase from 45 percent to 75 percent on these products. This is consistent with the Framework Convention for Tobacco Control.”

She stated further that the Ministry of Health and Environment acknowledges that it is the responsibility of all stakeholders to protect the health of both smokers and non-smokers from the poisons in tobacco smoke.

“The Ministry of Health and Environment is also in the process of making recommendations to the government to create policies which will contribute to the improvement of the health of the nation,” Royer stated.

She noted that the Minister of Health and Environment, Dr. Kenneth Darroux, urges the public to take all the necessary preventive measures to reduce their risks associated with tobacco use.

The Ministry will be observing a month of activities to combat the use of tobacco which will include public education, media discussion, town hall meetings and a poetry competition.

The public is encouraged to participate in the activities.

According to the World Health Organization nearly 80% of the more than one billion smokers worldwide live in low- and middle-income countries, where the burden of tobacco-related illness and death is heaviest. Tobacco users who die prematurely deprive their families of income, raise the cost of health care and hinder economic development.

The tobacco epidemic is fueled by false advertising from the Tobacco Industry targeting mainly the youths and females, lack of tight enough fiscal policies and most recently by an upsurge in illicit trade of tobacco products.

Some conditions which are the results of either direct or indirect tobacco smoke include; Cancer of the lungs, mouth and throat , Chronic bronchitis and emphysema, Heart Disease, Miscarriages, infertility and sexual dysfunction in males and more.

Every year, on the 31 May, the World Health Organization (WHO) and partners mark World No Tobacco Day, highlighting the health risks associated with tobacco use and advocating for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption.

For World No Tobacco Day 2015, as party to the Framework Convention for Tobacco Control, Dominica joins the global community in highlighting the public health consequences of tobacco consumption. Dominica will focus on the theme” “The Harmful Effects of Tobacco : Beware”

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  1. June 5, 2015

    Smoking should be made illigal in puplic places ,around children ,the sick and elderly people …i will never encourage someone who wants to smoke but people always feels some discomfort when they are next to smokers…honest if the gov’t would make smoking in public places illigal it would be a good for every one and the streets will be free from cigarette filth.

    • June 6, 2015

      If governments didn’t make so much money from licenses and taxing the sales of tobacco products they would have shut these companies down long ago.

      Since the truth about tobacco smoke has become known there has been a decline in the number of adults who smoke. Have you noticed how the cigarette companies have begun slanting their advertising towards reaching the younger generation especially teens :?:

      We found they were actually spiking the cigarettes to make them more addictive.

      It is time the governments pulled the licenses of these companies (criminal operations) and shut them down. Never mind moving them to another part of town because nobody else wants them. Even those who smoke are trying to quit and cursing the industry.

      Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International Evangelist.

  2. June 4, 2015

    Here in my part of Canada no smoking is allowed in establishments that serve meals or even in bars. There is no smoking in public places such as any work place, barber shops, educational institutions, shopping centers or stores of any kind, doctor’s office, or hospital.

    Several of Canada’s largest tobacco companies are presently being sued for millions of dollars (Canadian)
    in class action suits by the families of victims who died from tobacco related cancer. It was found that tobacco companies were ”spiking” the cigarettes to make them more addictive.

    Studies have shown that second hand smoke is more dangerous than first hand smoke. People are not allowed now to smoke in taxis, buses, trains, or on ships. They cannot smoke in a private car where there are children.

    This report from the Ministry of Health in Dominica by Permanent Secretary Helen Royer is in everybody’s best interest. It is for the good of the nation. 

    Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International…

  3. The Real Facts
    June 4, 2015

    Second hand smoke is extremely unhealthy. Some women who never smoked and were exposed to cigarette and tobacco smoke contracted lung cancer.
    Tobacco factories emit unhealthy odor; bad enough being employed in one. I remember, as a teenager a few of us in the Legion of Mary visited a sick young lady who resided in Pottersville. She was employed at the tobacco factory in Roseau. After prayers and as a weekly assignment, we visited the elderly and the sick to pray with them. She was one of them.
    It was pathetic what happened to her and what her face looked like. She could not see, talk nor eat. Her face was rolled into one and unrecognizable. This made her mouth become very small. She tried to move it to pray along with us. It was (is) a good thing I have a strong spirit which no doubt comes from strong faith. It was difficult to look at her. I could have cried. She eventually died. I had heard she was engaged to be married. I still remember her name.

    • June 6, 2015

      Such a sad story.

      A few years ago the Ministry of Health for the Province of Ontario in Canada had a warning on T.V. about smoking tobacco.

      It showed a video of one woman’s true life testimony. She had never smoked a day in her life. But she worked for years as a waitress in a lounge where smoking was allowed and the place was always filled with tobacco smoke. The doctors contributed her cancer to second hand smoke. When the video was made she only had a few months to live. Later they added a statement she had passed way on a certain date.

      I saw a talk show on television with a top executive from one of the largest cigarette companies in Canada denying that tobacco smoke caused cancer. I could not believe what I was seeing and hearing. This man was actually saying most emphatically there was absolutely NO evidence to link tobacco smoke and cancer :!:

      It is a criminal industry built on deception, lies, and driven by greed.

      Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International…

  4. derp
    June 4, 2015

    everyday in roseau i must smell nasty, tobacco smoke, ban that….

  5. Peter Potter
    June 4, 2015

    Wow, lucky Dominica! That is all the Ministry of Health has to worry about! Why don’t you get your priorities right just for once? Starting with vector borne diseases, alcohol abuse, drug abuses, obesity… All that is much more damaging to the citizens health than passive smoke. Talking about smoke, the smoke I have to inhale every afternoon and evening caused by people burning rubbish and nearby bush fires presumably is nothing to worry about. Is it? Man, the this government is a joke…the incompetence is second to none.

  6. UserName
    June 4, 2015

    Troubling is the apparent lack of Govt. conviction in allowing JAS Garraway to operate a tobacco processing plant in the heart of the Capital City, Roseau. We understand that JAS has been in operation for a number of years when Roseau was not that congested and we were still in the “clouded ages” but that is no excuse for Govt. to take a blind eye approach in dealing with this problem in this day and age. The people of Grand Bay and Dominicans by extension are being unnecessarily exposed to these harmful fumes while they wait in their bus to head south. It is “high time” that a concerted effort be made to relocate that poisonous industry to somewhere else, preferably to the industrial zone but people of Canefield might appose to this suggestion. Looking and see what happens.

    • Titiwi
      June 4, 2015

      Bro, I agree with you up to a point. This article is about tobacco smoke and not the smell of tobacco we get from the factory and that is not worse than the smell from weed. But still, it would be better to relocate that factory somewhere outside town, right next the sea so the smell can drift over the ocean. But that is nothing compared with the smoke from bushfires that people set and burning household waste, especially plastic right in your yard. You know that can give you respiratory disease and serious cancer? That is one nasty and unhealthy habit we have. In fact I believe it to be illegal but perhaps someone can correct me on that.

    • Tjebe fort
      June 5, 2015

      Boy I submit people from grandbay are more exposed to the smoke of ganja than tobacco and ganja smoke can give you cancer too, just like tobacco. This is a red herring.

    • June 5, 2015

      The biggest and most famous cigarette manufacturing companies in Canada are currently being sued for millions of dollars by the families of victims who have died from tobacco smoke. I share this information because I want people to know they CAN sue a tobacco company.

      It is a scientific fact that 50% of smokers WILL die from a disease caused by their smoking. This does not include those who die from second hand smoke and there are a significant number of them. These companies are literally killing people. We learned that they were actually spiking the cigarettes to make them more addictive.

      The best way to confront this evil is for families of the victims to come together and do a class action suite. There is enough science on their side now to win big time.

      Sincerely, Rev. Donald Hill. International Evangelist.

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