The Continuous Household Survey, which includes questions about smoking, showed that adult smoking prevalence in Northern Ireland was 24% with smoking being most common among manual workers. One million work days are lost due to tobacco related conditions as high levels of ill-health result in absenteeism from work and shortened working life.
Using the workplace setting to encourage and support people to quit smoking creates a win-win situation for everyone – better health, increased production hours, improved staff morale, a pleasant working environment and a good corporate image.
The Workplace Smoking Cessation Service has been set up to provide a free service for employers in the following council areas: Newtownabbey, Antrim, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Coleraine, Moyle, Carrickfergus, Larne, Magherafelt, Cookstown.
The Workplace Smoking Cessation Specialist can offer you the following range of services, tailored to suit your individual business needs.
- Provide information and materials regarding smoking cessation to employers for distribution to employees at work.
- Provide information sessions and advice direct to employees, eg manned information stands and short talks.
- Provide information to workplaces on how employees can access smoking cessation services in their locality.
- Where numbers permit, work with employers to offer a workplace stop smoking service during work time.
- Provide support for employers to review/revise policies and staff induction programmes to embed a smoke free culture.
- Train key individuals in the workplace (health and safety advisers, union reps, occupational health professionals, human resources, managers and supervisors etc) in brief intervention training to help support new and existing employees in their quit attempts.
- Provide opportunities for workplace ‘Champions’ to become trained as in-house smoking cessation specialists.
- Support businesses to develop stop smoking activities that link with company employee health and wellbeing programmes and recognition awards, eg Investors in People.