At ACOSH, we advocate reducing the availability of both tobacco and e-cigarettes to encourage quitting, reduce relapse and prevent uptake of smoking and vaping by young people.
With the federal government’s release of the National Tobacco Strategy 2023 – 2030, we know that message has hit home, but it will also take action from state governments to make this a reality.
Here are some of the ways we can reduce access to cigarettes and vapes across the country.
Reducing Tobacco Licenses
Did you know in Western Australia there are nearly 6 times more tobacco retailers than pharmacies in Western Australia?
WA has 633 pharmacies. By comparison we have 3,400 tobacco sales outlets for our population of 2.6 million.
More outlets equal easier access which is only making the problem worse.
ACOSH supports increasing the cost of a retail tobacco license each year by at least $200 (currently $286 in WA). We believe that this would result in a reduction of outlets in WA and increased resources for monitoring and enforcement. By comparison, a tobacco license in Tasmania costs around $1,200 each year.
Reforms like these were proposed in the consultation report summarising submissions to the Review of the Tobacco Control Products Act 2006. While it was tabled in Parliament by the Minister for Health on 24 June 2021 the draft bill has not been introduced.
Join ACOSH in urging the government to pass the new Tobacco Control Products Act 2006 with the WA Minister for Health. Contact email@example.com
Reducing Vape Shops
Until recently most people didn’t know that In Australia, it’s illegal to sell, supply or possess an e-cigarette or vape liquid containing nicotine without a doctor’s prescription. So-called ‘non-nicotine’ vapes were deliberately mislabelled but usually contained significant amounts of nicotine. And that’s been the loophole that has led to a rampant black market.
With Health Minister Mark Butler’s announcements in early May, the government has now closed this loophole by only allowing e-cigarettes into the country if they have a prescription. They will also close down and end vape sales in retail settings. This is the strongest action yet in shutting down supply.
ACOSH supports the federal government’s strong stand and encourages the state governments to begin the process of enforcing the end of vapes in retail settings.
Anyone who believes a retailer is selling illegal e-cigarettes or vapes is urged to ‘dob-in-a dealer’ by contacting Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
If you suspect an individual is selling vapes or e-cigarettes, you can report it to the Department of Health by emailing TobaccoPolicy@health.wa.gov.au