Khaled rambles technology, tea/coffee, consumer rights and other interest from Saudi Arabia

June 14, 2010

Anti-smoking campaign targets Saudi youth

Filed under: News — Tags: , , — Khaled A. @ 1:14 am

Published on yesterday’s Arab News:

JEDDAH: Seven commercials about the harms of smoking are being screened on television as part of an anti-smoking campaign that has recently been launched targeting Saudi youth.

Flyers are also being distributed on the harms of smoking and lectures are being delivered on the subject as part of the campaign.

“The idea came to me when I visited a high school in Jeddah and met grade 11 students. I asked them about smoking and realized that 12 out of the 15 I met smoked,” said Kaswara Al-Khatib, managing director of Full Stop Advertising. “I have always been irritated that underage boys and girls are smoking cigarettes or the hookah. It is because of this that I came up with the idea of organizing a campaign to highlight the poor effects of smoking,” he added. “We are targeting young smokers who have begun smoking while at school because they have just started smoking and can easily be pulled back,” said Al-Khatib. “We’re avoiding older smokers because they are harder to convince,” he added.

Concerned Saudi citizen Hamza Khushaim said supermarkets sell cigarettes without giving due consideration to the age of those buying. “I think this campaign should also target supermarkets and restaurant owners who sell cigarettes and serve hookah pipes to youngsters,” he said.

“I once asked a salesman why he was selling cigarettes to young boys when he knows they are bad for their health. The guy told me that he also sells Pepsi knowing that it’s also bad for health and added that he is only concerned with making money,” he added.

Local companies and hospitals are also following suit. Balubaid Group of Companies and International Medical Center (IMC) recently joined together to hold an anti-smoking seminar that ran under the slogan “Extinguish your cigarette and spark hope.” The seminar was hosted by IMC’s Medical Director Dr. Ashraf Ameer and was held to spread awareness among the company’s employees and their families.

“The initiative came from Balubaid to emphasize that we do care about our employees’ health,” said Sana’a Dakheel from Balubaid. “The company has also banned smoking at all of its branches to promote its corporate culture which involves providing employees with healthy working environments,” she added.

End of article.

A good move, but I am also worried about restaurants and coffee shops with no non-smoking sections. I am looking at you, Dunkin Donuts Saudi Arabia.

Always good news to hear, thanks R. Hakim. Please make sure to follow the #SmokefreeRiyadh twitter campaign by following @SmokefreeRiyadh.

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