On the agenda - Smoking ban in cars with children

In a nutshell Smoking should be banned in cars carrying children, a leading doctor said last week. Professor Terence Stephenson, head of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), said it should be illegal to impose smoke on children in a confined space.

Smoking: doctor calls for ban on smoking in car
Smoking: doctor calls for ban on smoking in car

Why is he speaking out?
The physician said second-hand smoke was linked to chest infections in children, asthma, ear problems and sudden infant death syndrome. He referred to an Ontario Tobacco Research Unit study that showed smoking one cigarette created pollution inside a car 100 times greater than accepted US standards.

What else did he say?
Stephenson asked why parents would smoke in front of their children: ‘Why on earth would you light up in your car while your children are sitting in the back? On the assumption that you wouldn’t pass the packet round and invite the kids to light up, why make them breathe tobacco smoke at all?’

PR strategy
Stephenson wrote an exclusive piece for the ‘Scrubbing Up’ column on the BBC News website.

Media coverage
The story was covered by the Daily Mail, Daily Express and Daily Mirror. The subject was also  debated on BBC Breakfast.

PR support
The RCPCH’s two press officers fielded media calls after publication of the piece.

STATS

21%
of the population of Great Britain aged 16+ smokes


66%
of smokers say they want to quit

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