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June 26, 2000
Breathing Space Launch June 27, 2000
  
Breathing Space, the first GTA and Hamilton-wide project aimed to encourage
more people to make their homes 100 per cent smoke-free, launches its social
marketing campaign on Tuesday, June 27, 10:30 a.m. at the Metro Central YMCA
Auditorium, 2nd Floor, 20 Grosvenor Street.

Six Public Health Units - Durham Region Health Department, Halton Region Health
Department, Hamilton-Wentworth Social and Public Health Services, Peel Health,
Toronto Public Health, and York Region Health Services - are partners in this
project, targeted to over five million people who live in these areas.

"The Breathing Space campaign reminds people who allow smoking in their homes
that second-hand smoke is harmful, particularly for children," said Dr. David
McKeown, Medical Officer of Health for Peel Region, on behalf of all the Public
Health Units involved in the project. "We all hope this campaign will encourage
more homes to be 100% smoke-free," he added.

The Breathing Space mass media campaign in which all partner health units are
participating consists of transit shelter advertising, radio and newspaper
advertising, plus a community poster with a fact sheet pad. A Breathing Space
identifier suitable for homes and cars lets people know at a glance that the
space is 100 per cent smoke-free.

Second-hand smoke is the third leading preventable cause of death. Exposure to
second-hand smoke is particularly harmful to infants and children, since:
- Infants are more likely to die from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), also
known as crib death.
- Infants and children are at greater risk of developing pneumonia and
bronchitis and are more likely to need hospital care.
- Children are at greater risk of developing asthma. Their asthma attacks can
be more severe and frequent.

Funding for the Breathing Space campaign is provided by the Ontario Tobacco
Strategy, Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. No endorsement by the
ministry is intended or should be inferred.


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