July 26, 2010 - More than 1.2 million signatures have been collected during a one-month campaign entitled “Non-smoke house” in Vietnam. (Vietnam population 86,210,781 - 2008 Source: World Bank)
Nguyen Tuan Lam, National Professional Officer of WHO Vietnam’s Tobacco Free Initiative: “Nearly half of Vietnamese men smoke and the rate is even higher, at 65 percent, among men between 25-45 years old. Around 40,000 people in Vietnam die every year to tobacco-related diseases and the low price of cigarettes and water-pipe was among the causes of the high smoking rate among men."
Tax increase an optimum tobacco control measure, ThanhNienNews.com, 3/13/2010.
The 1.2 million figure was released by the Vietnam Women’s Union (VWU) Central Committee and the Office of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Vietnam at a meeting to sum up the campaign in Hanoi on July 22.
The “Non-smoke house” campaign, which was launched on May 31, was part of activities in response to the World No Tobacco Day themed “Tobacco and Gender”, focusing on the harmful effects of smoking on women and children.
Together with signature collection, the VWU Central Committee trained its staff and officers in 30 provinces and cities on the harmful effects of smoking, the smoking situation in Vietnam and the benefits of a non-smoking environment.
Over 820,000 women were provided with information on the damaging effects of cigarette smoke and passive smoking through activities of the grassroots women associations.
The women associations of all levels delivered 200,000 WHO-issued postcards on tobacco’s bad effects.
Speaking at the meeting, a WHO representative emphasised the important role of the VWU in accessing and disseminating information to families about the dangers of tobacco.
Reference: One million signatures for no-smoking campaign, En.VietnamPlus.vn, 7/22/2010.
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