Leading by example: Leeds City Council to go smokefree

In collaboration with the Press Association

Leeds City council has announced that it will go smokefree from May 31st - ahead of legal requirements to do so. The council announced that all its civic buildings, offices, depots and vehicles will be smokefree environments from the end of may this year. Welcoming the news, Jean King, Cancer Research UK's director of tobacco control, said: "The scientific evidence is clear. Breathing in secondhand smoke is very harmful to health and can increase your risk of lung cancer, heart disease and serious respiratory problems. "All employers have a duty to safeguard the health of their workers and their customers. We're absolutely delighted to see Leeds City Council taking this responsible action in advance of this becoming a legal requirement and hope that others follow their lead."

Councillor Mark Harris, leader of Leeds City Council, added: "We have informed our colleagues of the changes, and are working with the NHS Leeds Smoking Services to offer support to anyone who wishes to take this opportunity to give up smoking." It has been estimated that several hundred cancer deaths in the UK are caused each year by secondhand smoke.