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Donegal County Council adopts a Tobacco Free Campus Policy

TFC Policy Adoption­


Donegal County Council adopts a Tobacco Free Campus Policy


As a precursor to the launch of Donegal’s ‘Not Around Us’ Campaign, Donegal County Council at their July 2021 Council Plenary meeting adopted a Tobacco Free Campus Policy.


In Ireland, every week smoking causes 100 deaths and over 1,000 hospital admissions and is the leading cause of avoidable premature death. One in every two people who smoke tobacco will die from a tobacco-related disease and life expectancy for tobacco users is at least 10 years lower than for non-tobacco users.


The Healthy Ireland funded, ‘Not Around Us’ Campaign is about promoting an environment where it is easier for those who use tobacco  to quit and stay quit while helping to de-normalise smoking tobacco for the next generation. Healthy Donegal plans to launch the ‘Not Around Us’ Campaign in September 2021 to support the implementation of the national Tobacco Free Ireland Strategy. Working towards these common goals, Donegal County Council through Healthy Donegal and in conjunction with the HSE Smoking Cessation Team will continue to promote the denormalisation of smoking tobacco at every opportunity and the protection of children and young people from second hand smoke - two of the underpinning objectives of the Tobacco Free Ireland Strategy.


Cathaoirleach of Donegal County Council Cllr. Jack Murray said:

“In 2009, Donegal County Council led the way by being the first Local Authority to introduce Tobacco Free playgrounds in Ireland - since then, numerous County, City and Town Councils followed suit and have introduced similar initiatives. In adopting the Tobacco Free Campus Policy Donegal County Council is once again leading by example in promoting the denormalisation of smoking, vaping and tobacco use throughout all Council buildings and facilities ahead of inviting and encouraging groups, organisations and businesses in Co. Donegal to become Tobacco Free campuses at the launch of the Not Around Us Campaign in September this year.”

Donegal County Council Chief Executive Mr. John McLaughlin said:

Tobacco Free Ireland sets a target for Ireland to have a smoking prevalence rate of less than 5% by 2025. The introduction of a Tobacco Free Campus Policy under the Healthy Ireland initiative aligns with and supports actions specific to local authorities under the Tobacco Free Ireland Strategy. Through this policy Donegal County Council hopes to change social norms around tobacco use by protecting    and    improving    the    health,   safety    and    welfare    of    staff, Elected Members, visitors, and the wider community while creating a supportive and encouraging environment for staff to stop smoking.”


Donegal County Council Director of Community Development and Planning Services Mr. Liam Ward said:

“Community development is a process whereby community members are supported by organisations and agencies to identify and take collective action on issues which are important to them. As we navigate the path of the Covid19 Pandemic, the issue of health and wellbeing is brought to the forefront of all our lives like never before.  Donegal Local Community Development Committee through Healthy Donegal is helping to create and sustain a healthy place for our community in Donegal through the development and implementation of the Healthy Ireland programme.”


HSE Health Promotion & Improvement / Health & Wellbeing Manager Anne McAteer said:

“The introduction of policies such as the Tobacco Free Campus Policy by Donegal County Council plays a large part in making Ireland tobacco free and also plays an important role in supporting people to quit smoking tobacco. Donegal County Council is to be commended for their contribution to supporting the government’s vision for a Tobacco Free Ireland by 2025 through this Healthy Ireland initiative.”


If you are interested in quitting smoking please contact Maresa McGettigan on 0860492465 or Fiona Boyle on 0872514790 to receive information on any of the 13 FREE face-to-face clinics throughout Donegal. You can also contact or freephone 1800 201 203 for free support. . When you quit for 28 days you are 5 times more likely to quit for good and you have a greater chance of quitting when you get support from specialist staff and use treatments like Champix or Nicotine Replacement Therapy to help you quit.


Donegal County Council’s Tobacco Free Campus Policy will be effective from 30th September 2021.


‘The Healthy Ireland Fund supported by the Department of Health and the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth’



Tobacco Free Campus

Healthy Donegal

Tobacco Free Campus

Pictured L-R Back: Anne McAteer - Health Promotion & Improvement / Health & Wellbeing Manager, HSE, Maresa McGettigan, Health Promotion & Improvement Officer, Fiona Boyle Health Promotion & Improvement Officer. Front: L-R: Margaret Fitzgerald, Healthy Donegal Coordinator, Cllr. Niamh Kennedy, Chair of the Donegal LCDC


World Tobacco Day 2021 takes place this week. Every week smoking causes 100 deaths and over 1,000 hospital admissions in Ireland. One in every two people who smokes will die from a tobacco-related disease. A person who smokes can also expect to lose 10 years of life. 


Ireland’s Tobacco Free Ireland Strategy, sets a target for Ireland to have a smoking prevalence of less than 5% by 2025 (the current rate is 17%). Two of the underpinning objectives running through the strategy are to: 


• Protect children and denormalise tobacco use, and

• Offer help to quit tobacco use. 


In 2009, Donegal County Council recognised the need for a shift towards the denormalisation of smoking and was the first local authority to introduce Smoke Free Playgrounds in Ireland. In 2021, this is considered normal. Donegal Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) at its meeting on 18th May, approved a proposal to further promote the denormalisation of smoking, vaping and tobacco use across all county council facilities, by becoming a tobacco free campus from 30th September 2021. 


If you would like help to give up smoking contact support services are available - contact 
Fiona Boyle on 087 2514790
Maresa McGetttigan on 086 0492465


#QuittingIsWinning #NotAroundUs #SmokeFreeCampus


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