I was paging through my first ever copy of The Epoch Times yesterday, and read that they’re planning on banning smoking in Quebec bars and restaurants (and “within 9 metres of the entrances to educational institutions, daycares, and health and social service facilities”). While I’m pleased French-Canada is finally onboard, the more interesting story was this:
There are no official statistics available as to whether the bans have been a motivating factor for smokers to quit, but according to the Canadian Tobacco Use Monitoring Survey, smoking rates have dropped in the last 6 years. In 1999, there were approximately 6 million smokers in Canada aged 15 or older, compared with just over 5 million for the same age group in 2004.
That’s really strong work, and it’s not something the government talks about enough. A 4% reduction in the national smoking rate in the past five years? Maybe all this silly talk about scaling healthcare rates for bad habits will just go away.