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New smokefree laws to be scrapped – In the News

The new Government’s intention to repeal world-first smokefree laws has captured headlines this week both in Aotearoa and around the world.

New Zealand’s new Government announced late last week that it would scrap “smokefree generation” laws.

Finance Minister Nicola Willis has said the move is in order to fund tax cuts. The National Party has said it remains committed to reducing smoking rates.

The legislation came into effect this January under the previous Labour Government. It would have served as what some experts called a ‘tobacco endgame‘: stopping people born after 2009 and younger from ever being able to legally purchase tobacco.

The laws would have also lowered the amount of nicotine in cigarettes and tobacco to non-addictive levels, and there would have been a hard cap on the number of shops across the country that could sell cigarettes to people in the first place.

Public health experts in Aotearoa and abroad have widely eviscerated the repeal, saying the move runs contrary to the evidence of what’s required to end the smoking epidemic.

Experts have also highlighted the disproportionate effect the move will have on Māori communities.

Further reading:

New Zealand smoking ban: Health experts criticise new government’s shock reversal – BBC
New Zealand scraps world-first smoking ‘generation ban’ to fund tax cutsThe Guardian
New Zealand Scraps the World’s First Generational Smoking Ban. Here’s What to KnowTIME
New Zealand’s new government plans to roll back cigarette ban as it funds tax cuts – NPR
Incoming New Zealand govt to abandon anti-smoking laws – France24
New Zealand to repeal flagship generational smoking ban in move slammed by health experts – Independent
New Zealand’s Next Government to Scrap Law Curbing Tobacco Sales – Bloomberg
New Zealand’s new PM to scrap ‘generational smoking ban’ – Deutsche Welles
‘Major loss’: New Zealand backtracks on world-first tobacco banThe Sydney Morning Herald
Experts up in arms as new Govt scraps smokefree laws – 1News
Most vulnerable to pay price for tax cuts cushioning wealthiest, Māori health experts say – Stuff
Smokefree laws: What the world’s saying about NZ’s ‘shock reversal’ – 1News
Disbelief as a smokefree generation slips away – RNZ
Smokefree law reverse a step backwards for Māori – advocates – Te Karere
The Smokefree legislation is evidence-based, removing it is not – NZ Doctor
Global reputation for smokefree leadership is going up in smokeThe Post