On June 9, to mark Matariki, Plunket supported Quitline's Matariki dawn event in Wellington.
Matariki is traditionally a time to reflect on the past year and plan for the year ahead. The event was a ceremony which challenged smokers to quit and start the New Year Smokefree.
Rangatahi (youth) from seven colleges used a fantastic variety of performances of haka, waiata and rap to lay down a challenge to New Zealanders not to take up smoking, or to quit and to be “Smoke free warriors”.
Statistics show that Māori, particularly Māori women, make up the highest number of smokers in New Zealand.
Plunket welcomes measures such as plain packaging and banning point of sale tobacco displays, which will support Māori to put their hand up to quit smoking.
Maternal smoking and exposure to second-hand smoke directly affects the health of our infants and children.
As an advocate of whānau awhina, whānau ora, Plunket advocates a smoke-free pregnancy, and smoke-free homes, environments and communities.