Mid Ulster District Council is working in partnership with the Public Health Agency (PHA) to promote the Workplace Stop Smoking Service to local businesses.
Using a workplace setting to encourage and support people to quit smoking is beneficial for everyone in the business as it results in better health, increased productivity, improved staff morale, a pleasant working environment and a good corporate image.
The Workplace Stop Smoking Service, funded by the PHA, offers a free comprehensive service to both employers and employees, to target routine and manual workers; a group highlighted because smoking prevalence in this group (30%) is much higher compared to the general population (22%).
The specialist can visit your business, at your convenience, to provide expert guidance on what steps you can take to improve the health of your workforce, be it through workplace clinics, employee engagement events or developing / reviewing your smoke free policy.
Smoking related ill-health results in shorter working lives and higher levels of absenteeism.
The Chair of Mid Ulster District Council, Councillor Trevor Wilson has welcomed the scheme, “I am delighted the Council is working in partnership with the Public Health Agency to deliver this extremely worth-while and in some cases life-saving service! The fact that they deliver it in the workplace is an added bonus. It means those wishing to quit will be able to support and encourage one another to succeed,” he said.
The Chair concluded, “With approximately 2,300 people dying from smoking related illnesses in Northern Ireland every year, the issue has to be addressed and this new scheme tackles it head on. If even a handful of people give up smoking for life as a result, it will have been worth it in my opinion.”
Sandvik a leading employer in the Mid Ulster area recently availed of the free service and Amanda Thompson, EHS Advisor for Sandvik, said: “It is statistically proven that looking after the health and wellbeing of employees, increases workforce morale. Stopping smoking can be challenging but this service is a fantastic resource that offers onsite, professional support to those employees who wish to stop. Many thanks to those at the Workplace Stop Smoking Service for giving us access to this programme.”
The Northern Regional College, having six campus sites, with one in Magherafelt used the Workplace Stop Smoking Service when they wanted to review their No Smoking policy and address the use of e-cigarettes inside their buildings.
Stephen McCartney, Head of Student Services said, “The information and guidance provided by the Workplace Stop Smoking Service was exceptionally useful when we decided to address smoking on our premises. Northern Regional College has since banned e-cigarettes across all of our six sites since 2015. Any business or organisation having similar issues should try this service.”
To access the service contact Environmental Health at Mid Ulster District Council on 03000 132 132 or alternatively e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or for further information on the workplace stop smoking service go to http://www.want2stop.info/smoking-workplace.