LGA responds to latest smoking habits figures

“Council public health teams work hard to help reduce smoking rates in their areas, alongside local charities and community groups, and it is testament to their efforts that smoking rates continue to fall."


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Responding to latest ONS figures on adult smoking habits, which show that the proportion of the population in England who are current smokers has fallen to 13.9 per cent in 2019, Cllr Ian Hudspeth, Chairman of the LGA’s Community Wellbeing Board, said:

“Council public health teams work hard to help reduce smoking rates in their areas, alongside local charities and community groups, and it is testament to their efforts that smoking rates continue to fall.

“Smoking is still the leading cause of preventable death. Reducing smoking rates among the remaining 5.7 million smokers in England is the single biggest thing we can do to improve the nation’s health, as it will reduce cardiovascular disease, respiratory conditions and cancer, meaning people can live longer in better health.  

“Greater help is needed for those most in need of support, including routine and manual workers, pregnant women or people with mental health conditions. 

“Every pound invested by government in council-run services such as public health helps to relieve pressure on other services like the NHS, criminal justice and welfare. Councils can help the Government to achieve its ambition of eliminating smoking in England by 2030, through their tobacco control and other public health and support services, but need certainty over their long-term funding.”

Notes to editors

Adult smoking habits in the UK: 2019