The World Health Organization (WHO) created World No Tobacco Day in 1987 to draw global attention to the tobacco epidemic and the preventable death and disease it causes.
Page last updated: 15 May 2017
World No Tobacco Dayis celebrated around the world every year on 31 May. World No Tobacco Day raises awareness about the devastating health effects of tobacco use and exposure. It is a day to encourage a 24 hour period of abstinence from tobacco use. It can also be a day to quit.
This year’s theme is Tobacco – a threat to development. The global World No Tobacco Day campaign for 2017 aims to demonstrate the threat that the tobacco industry poses to the sustainable development of all countries, including the health and economic well-being of their citizens. It will also propose measures that governments and the public should take to promote health and development by confronting the global tobacco epidemic.
Australia’s smoking rates
Smoking tobacco is the largest preventable cause of death and disease in Australia. Each year, smoking is estimated to kill almost 19,000 Australians and costs Australia $31.5 billion in social (including health) and economic costs.
The Australian Government and State and Territory governments, through the Council of Australian Governments, have committed by 2018, to reduce the national adult daily smoking rate to 10% and halve the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adult daily smoking rate (from 44.8%, age-standardised in 2008).
World No Tobacco Day provides an opportunity for people, governments and non-government organisations to organise various activities to make people aware of the health effects that tobacco use and exposure causes.
Getting the right help and support can go a long way to ensure that smokers quit for good. Many free advice and support services exist to help smokers prepare to quit and recent quitters stay smoke free.
The Quitline is a confidential telephone information advice and counselling service for people who want to quit smoking. You can phone the Quitline between 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday on 13 7848 from anywhere in Australia for the cost of a local call.
Further information about the Quitline and other support services can be found on the Quitnow website.
World Health Organization World No Tobacco Day
For World No Tobacco Day 2017, the WHO and the Secretariat of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) call on all countries to prioritise and accelerate tobacco control efforts and encourages countries to include tobacco control in their national responses to the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. Australian governments, including states and territories, have made significant efforts to reduce tobacco consumption, including a comprehensive set of national tobacco control measures.
There is a variety of quit smoking material available that your organisation may find useful. Promotional material including posters and other resources can be ordered from the Tobacco Resources page. and the Quit now resources page.