Federal government must find political willpower to extinguish all tobacco advertising



    OTTAWA, June 28 /CNW Telbec/ - The Canadian Medical Association (CMA)
applauds today's ruling by the Supreme Court of Canada on tobacco advertising
and is particularly pleased that the Court recognizes that public health
concerns are a reasonable grounds for infringing the Charter of Rights and
Freedoms.
    "The Supreme Court ruling upholding strict federal limits on advertising
and promotion by tobacco companies is a welcome decision," said CMA President,
Dr. Colin McMillan. "However, over 37,000 Canadians die every year from
tobacco-related disease so the federal government cannot afford to rest on its
laurels. Too many lives are at stake."
    The federal government must continue Canada's global leadership on
tobacco control initiatives - Canada was the first country to mandate picture
warning on cigarette packaging and one of the first to ratify the World Health
Organisation's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. Even though today's
ruling restricts the scope of tobacco advertising, the door is still open for
tobacco products to be marketed to the general public.
    The CMA recommends that the Government of Canada lead the way and ban all
forms of tobacco product advertising.
    The following actions should also be implemented:

    
    - Ban "power walls" and other displays of tobacco products in stores;
    - Ban misleading tobacco product descriptors such as "light" and "mild";
    - Follow through with proposed regulations to ban smoking in airports,
      military bases and all other public places under federal jurisdiction;
      and
    - Take action against the growing traffic in contraband tobacco products.

    "The dangers of tobacco demand strong tobacco control laws," concluded Dr.
McMillan. "While such laws have helped cut the number of Canadians who die
every year from tobacco use, tobacco still remains this country's number one
cause of preventable diseases and death."


                 La version française de ce communiqué sera publiée sous peu.
    




For further information:

For further information: Lucie Boileau, 1-800-663-7336 x1266, (613)
731-8610 x1266


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