Drive to make Burnley “smokefree”

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PARENTS who smoke are being encouraged to “take it outside” to protect their children from harm.

The Smoke-free North-West campaign was in Burnley to highlight the dangers of second-hand cigarette smoke for youngsters.

Families were being urged to make their homes smoke-free in the run up to Mother’s Day under the Take 7 Steps Out drive.

Burnley mum Kaileigh Shaw, who has a three-year-old daughter Shaania Shaw-Mia, said: “ I always smoke outside with the door shut and I’m really strict with anyone who comes to our house, telling them they cannot smoke inside.

“There’s nothing difficult about smoking outside. If anything, it reduces the amount you smoke.”

The campaign, developed by Smoke-free North-West, urges all parents to be aware of the harm that second-hand smoke can cause to their children’s health.

The advice is to take at least seven steps outside of the house to ensure smoke does not drift back in.

Helen Denton, executive director for children and young people at Lancashire County Council said: “Parents in Lancashire clearly want the best for their children, but unfortunately many are unaware of how much second-hand smoke affects their child’s health.

“There is no doubt that cigarette smoke harms children, but most parents think that moving to another part of the room, opening a window in a car or house, or smoking just outside the door will prevent harm.

“It won’t, but just a small change such as to take seven steps out of your home, or not to smoke at all in the car, can make all the difference.

“This campaign aims to arm parents and carers with important information to help them make a good decision about their child’s well-being.”

You can log on at Take7 Steps Out for helpful tips and hints about how to make your home smokefree at www.take7stepsout.co.uk.

If you would like to make your home a smoke-free zone and receive a goody bag of items to show people your home is smoke free, contact NHS East Lancashire’s Smoke Free Homes Team on 01706 871740, or email smokefreehomes@madencentre.org.uk.