Smoke-free play park campaign a NI first

Dr Andrew Gamble, Health and Social Wellbeing Senior Officer, Patricia Allen, Head of Regulatory Services MEABC, Gillian McAtackney, Workplace Smoking Cessation Specialist, Maurice Meehan, PHA Head of Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement for the Northern Area, Mayor of Mid and East Antrim Cllr Paul Reid, Stephen Daye, Head of Parks and Open Spaces MEABC, Denise McVeigh, Play Development Officer MEABC.
Dr Andrew Gamble, Health and Social Wellbeing Senior Officer, Patricia Allen, Head of Regulatory Services MEABC, Gillian McAtackney, Workplace Smoking Cessation Specialist, Maurice Meehan, PHA Head of Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement for the Northern Area, Mayor of Mid and East Antrim Cllr Paul Reid, Stephen Daye, Head of Parks and Open Spaces MEABC, Denise McVeigh, Play Development Officer MEABC.

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council is the first in Northern Ireland to make all its play parks ‘smoke-free’ zones.

Its innovative Smoke-Free Play Park Campaign has been rolled out across all 69 play parks within the Borough using signs promoting a smoke-free environment.

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr Paul Reid with Maurice Meehan, PHA Head of Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement for the Northern Area and P7 pupils from St MacNissi's Primary School, Larne.

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr Paul Reid with Maurice Meehan, PHA Head of Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement for the Northern Area and P7 pupils from St MacNissi's Primary School, Larne.

The campaign is a result of a collaborative partnership between two council teams, Regulatory Services and Parks, supported and led by Gillian McAtackney whose post within council is funded by the Public Health Agency.

Mayor of Mid and East Antrim Councillor Paul Reid said: “Mid and East Antrim Borough Council have an important role to play in leading the way in the creation of an environment for our people to enjoy longer and healthier lives.

“I am proud to be part of a campaign which will protect the right of everyone to breathe fresh air.

“Council is committed to creating a vibrant, healthy, prosperous, safe and sustainable community for all. Our focus is always to improve the quality of life for those who live in or visit the borough through the services we provide and having smoke free play parks will significantly contribute to this.”

Maurice Meehan, Head of Health and Social Wellbeing Improvement for the Northern Area with the PHA, said, “It is our hope that smoke-free parks will act as a polite request to encourage adults not to smoke in areas primarily used by children, creating a more pleasant environment.”