Collaborative project to reduce smoking impact

Two women holding signs that read 'Proud to be Smoke Free'. The women are seated underneath a sign that reads 'Home of the Cockburn Cricket Club and Cockburn Cobras Football Club'
Health Promotions Officers Ruth Aspinall from SMHS and Gloria Askander from the City of Cockburn at the Cockburn Cricket Club.
May 15, 2018

A strong partnership between South Metropolitan Health Service (SMHS) and the City of Cockburn has seen new smoke free signage installed at local sporting precincts.

Led by SMHS Health Promotion Officer Ruth Aspinall, the project started with an audit of current signage and a count of cigarette butts at six Cockburn sporting facilities.

 “With an average of nine per cent of the Cockburn population (over the age of 16) smoking, it was clear it was time to reinforce the smoke free message,” Ruth said.

The new signage reflects the latest trends in smoke free signage.

“Current research shows that punitive language isn’t effective in reinforcing the smoke free message, as the community has become accustomed to negative ‘no smoking’ signage,” Ruth said.

“We have taken a new approach by strengthening the message through positive, proactive language – stating that the City of Cockburn is ‘proud to be smoke free’.”

If the message is shown to be effective, the signage will be rolled out to all 16 sporting precincts within the council.

Travis Moore, The City of Cockburn’s Manager of Recreation and Community Safety, said the project aimed to make sporting environments safer for the community.

“The project forms part of the City’s aim to create healthier sporting club environments for the community, especially as the smoke-free venues are popular with young people and families,” he said.  

World No Tobacco Day is 31 May 2018 – the community is encouraged to make this the day to quit smoking. For information on quitting, visit Make Smoking History (external site).