Almost 22,000 Lincolnshire children protected from passive smoking by scheme, Smokefree Lincs Alliance announces

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THE Smokefree Lincs Alliance believes almost 22,000 children are now protected from the harmful effects of passive smoking thanks to a project by Lincolnshire Smoke Free Homes.

The Alliance said the success of the scheme comes exactly five years on from the legislation banning smoking in public spaces in England.

The statistics were revealed yesterday by the Alliance, which oversees the initiative for Public Health at Lincolnshire County Council.

The project is designed to encourage families to reduce or quit smoking within their home and family car.

Commenting on the landmark, Liz Clarke, Smoke Free Homes project officer, said: “I’m absolutely delighted that so many people have committed to living in a smoke-free household.

“Smoking is the UK’s most preventable disease and this project helps to reduce the effects of second-hand smoke to both parents and their children.

“Since the 2007 public places ban came into effect, it’s tremendous to see people recognise more than ever the dangers of smoking and have also taken this step in their own home too.”

The project is based on a three-stage ‘promise’, with each level determining the degree of smoking allowed in the home. Families have the ability to progress through the various stages as they reduce the exposure of smoking to their children.

So far, 18,680 households have signed up to a fully smoke-free home. This is in addition to 1,976 households agreeing to smoke in just one room and not in front of children and 482 homes deciding to never smoke in the presence of children.

“It’s so easy to get involved,” added Liz. “Although we know there is no safe level of second-hand smoke, the project is tailored to meet individual needs and residents who feel that they are not yet ready to make the immediate leap to a smoke-free home are still rewarded for their positive efforts.”

“We are however thrilled that nearly 90 per cent of Lincolnshire households involved in the project are now totally smoke-free.”

Residents can get involved by calling the team on 01522 550528, emailing smokefreehomes@lincolnshire.gov.uk, or visiting www.smokefreelincs.co.uk and click on ‘Smokefree Homes’.