Sunday, July 1, 2012

Is New Zealand's smoke free prisons policy a success...

Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) is offered to all prisoners and staff who want to quit the smoking habit.
The year-old smoking ban smoke-free in prisons is being hailed as a success by the Government and the Corrections Department.
Corrections Minister Anne Tolley says the ban, introduced on July 1 last year, had improved air quality and safety with a 72 percent reduction in fire-related incidents.
Department chief executive Ray Smith says it was the single most important health initiative that could have been taken for 8500 prisoners and 4500 staff nationwide.
The campaign started two years ago, and from November 1 last year to May 22 this year 4177 of the 5661 identified smokers have taken up the NRT offer.
Because smoking is not now permitted in New Zealand prisons, it will be difficult to assess just how many prisoners have actually given up the smoking habit; not until they have been released from prison.
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