Delamere Challenges Parliament To Become Smoke-freeAssociate Minister of Health
Associate Health Minister, Hon Tuariki Delamere, today challenged his colleagues to make Parliament a smoke-free working environment.
Speaking at the launch of the Health Funding Authority's smoking Quitline, Mr Delamere noted that New Zealand was making great progress in providing safe, healthy, smokefree workplaces, but then turned the spotlight on Parliament itself.
He told the audience, which included the Prime Minister and other politicians, that it was hypocritical of politicians to force other workplaces to be smokefree and not apply the same rules to themselves.
"It is wrong, in my view, to allow Ministers to smoke in their offices and then require departmental officials to attend meeting in those offices and have to endure the smoke," he said later.
"I would like to see all of Parliament, not just Ministerial offices, become smokefree. In that way, politicians could send a strong message to all New Zealanders that we are serious about curbing a habit that kills 4500 New Zealanders a year and costs us hundreds of millions of dollars in dealing with smoking-related illnesses," said Mr Delamere.