We agree to do all in our power to reduce smoking rates among our communities and highlight the harm that smoking causes.
Manchester City Council has signed up to the Local Authority Declaration on Tobacco Control at Full Council (10 July 2013).
The public health led charter is a statement of intent from the council to do all in its power to take action to reduce smoking rates among its communities as well as highlighting the harm that smoking causes.
Councillor Paul Andrews, Executive Member for adults, health and well-being at Manchester City Council, said:
"Since public health returned to local authority control it is our responsibility to do all that we can to tackle smoking and to work with our partners to promote healthy living choices for the health and well being of our residents.
"Because we have signed up to this declaration we are making a clear commitment to tackle the harmful effects of tobacco and we will work with our partners to try to make headway in tackling this epidemic."
In Manchester we spend in the region of £1m per year on tobacco control almost all of this through commissioning the Stop Smoking Service and Tobacco Free Futures, a North West organisation that runs campaigns on a regional basis.
David Regan, Director of Public Health for Manchester said: "Smoking is the single greatest cause of premature death and disease and we welcome this opportunity to lead local action to tackle smoking in our communities."
Every year in England more than 80,000 people die from smoking related disease and in Manchester the local estimate of deaths is 825 per year - this is the highest rate of smoking attributable mortality in England (372/100,000 population compared with 211/100,000 in England as a whole). Manchester also has one of the highest smoking rates in the country, estimated at 30% compared with 22% in England, and over twice the rate of the lowest smoking districts.
Manchester-based Tobacco Free Futures has been working with partners to develop the declaration. Chief Executive Andrea Crossfield said: ‘It’s really pleasing to see such strong support for a public commitment to tackling tobacco harms as it’s one of the most important actions a local authority can take to create stronger and healthier communities. We’ve made good progress to bring smoking rates down and cut the number of young people taking up a habit which kills half of long term smokers. There’s still a long way to go, though, as every six seconds in the UK somebody dies from a tobacco-related disease’.