Calling for effective action

Some of the most profound improvements in public health have come from action at national level… from seatbelts to the smokefree law in 2007.

Tobacco and alcohol are issues affecting every community and regions like the North East are hit the hardest. There is high public awareness of the problems they cause and strong support for change.

Advocacy is a core part of our work and we amplify the voices of people in our region about the harm and the need for action.

Fresh and Balance are core members of the Smokefree Action Coalition (SFAC) and the Alcohol Health Alliance (AHA) – two coalitions of leading medical organisations and health charities calling for action nationally.

These include Association of Directors of Public Health, Cancer Research UK, Faculty of Public Health and Royal College of Physicians.

A smokefree generation

We believe it is unacceptable that at least one in every two long term smokers will die from smoking and for each person who dies, there are 30 people suffering from a smoking related illness. It is wrong that tobacco related harm is costing our region at least £2.35bn billion each year due to the impact on health care, social care, fires and our businesses.

Our public agree with us. They don’t want this to continue happening. 78% of North East adults support making smoking history and 73% support raising the age of tobacco.

The North East has a Declaration for a Smokefree Future which was launched at a Leadership for a Smokefree Future conference on 27th September 2023.

Creating a smokefree generation - Ailsa Rutter OBE Director of Fresh and Balance statement at the Tobacco and Vapes Bill committee.

Former smoker and cancer survivor Sue Mountain is campaigning with Fresh for more action to create a smokefree generation and stop future generations getting hooked.

Alcohol causes cancer. But only one in three people in the North East are even aware. We need more information so people can make informed choices. We need alcohol taken more seriously with an urgent need for an independent review of alcohol harms and the evidence base for action to address these with a focus on prevention.

We are core members of the Alcohol Health Alliance UK (AHA) – promoting policies for reducing the harm caused by alcohol as set out in Health First: An evidence-based alcohol strategy for the UK.

Alcohol - take action

We campaign for an end to alcohol harm, to protect people’s health and to reduce crime; but we cannot do this without your support. Take part in Alcohol Health Alliance campaigns to raise awareness, tackle alcohol harm and achieve real change for those who need it.