Clip on map to enlarge..
March 3, 2011 - Most of the councillors informally polled by the Taranaki Daily News yesterday were against a smoking ban for the New Plymouth central business district (CBD). New Plymouth is the major city of the Taranaki Region on the west coast of the North Island of New Zealand.
Of the 11 councillors contacted, eight were against the proposed ban that Taranaki District Health Board health promoter Jill Nicholls called for at a meeting of the New Plymouth District Council on Tuesday. Ms Nicholls, in her deputation, spoke of a vision of the tobacco industry being dead in New Zealand by 2020 and asked councillors to consider a smoking ban in the CBD to support the idea.
There were two questions asked of councillors yesterday:
When was the last time you had a cigarette and how do you feel about a proposed smoking ban in the New Plymouth CBD?
Three of the councillors spoken to had never smoked or had only tried it as a teenager, yet two of these councillors didn't support the smoking ban. Despite eight of the councillors being reformed smokers, most weren't bothered enough by other smokers to want a ban enforced.
Councillors spoke of the difficulty in policing a ban and many touched on it being a human right's issue or a matter of personal choice.
Comment of Alex Matheson
"I haven't had a cigarette in many years, I would have been in my 30s probably.
"I think a CBD smokefree proposal might be contrary to human rights."
Reference: Smoking ban a bridge too far for most councillors JO MOIR, Taranaki Daily News online, 3/3/2011.
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