Yesterday marked the World Health Organisation's 'World No Tobacco Day' and the occasion was supported in the NSW Parliament.
"World No Tobacco Day is an annual worldwide event to promote awareness about the health effects of smoking and to encourage smokers to quit," Member for Oatley, Mark Coure said today.
"But tobacco-related harm remains the leading cause of preventable illness and death in New South Wales, imposing a huge health cost on families and communities and a substantial economic cost on our health system.
"Smoking-related illnesses account for approximately 5,200 deaths and 44,000 hospitalisations a year in New South Wales. One in every two lifetime smokers will die prematurely because they smoked.
"The social costs of smoking in New South Wales, including costs borne by government and individuals, are estimated at more than $8 billion annually in New South Wales.
"The New South Wales Government is strongly committed to the prevention and reduction of tobacco-related harm in New South Wales. There is much to be done to tackle what are still high levels of smoking, particularly among our most disadvantaged communities.
"The New South Wales Government will shortly release the New South Wales Tobacco Strategy 2011-2016. This comprehensive action plan will set out the actions that the New South Wales Government will take, in collaboration with key non-government organisation partners and others, to tackle smoking," Mr Coure concluded.