Micheál Martin: Inspiring a smoke free campus and city - what Leeds can learn from the Republic of Ireland

Thirteen years ago Micheál Martin, as Ireland’s Health Minister, implemented a law requiring smoke free workplaces. What inspiration can our campus and Leeds gain?

Thirteen years ago Miche├íl Martin, as Ireland’s Health Minister, implemented a law requiring smoke free workplaces. It was the first law of its kind in Europe and it followed many decades of anti-smoking legislation and campaigning.

The ban was brought forward as a positive, progressive health and safety measure that would bestow positive benefits to workers and the general public.

Has the smoking ban saved lives and improved health? A 2013 study showed that more than 3,700 deaths have been prevented in Ireland because people are less exposed to second-hand smoke. The study showed that mortality decreases were primarily due to reductions in passive smoking, rather than a reduction in active smoking.

The study showed a 26pc reduction in heart disease, a 32pc fall in strokes and a 38pc drop in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease mortality.

The findings in the scientific paper were published in the medical journal 'PLOS One' and follow research by Brunel University, London; the Environmental Health Sciences Institute; Dublin Institute of Technology; and the Tobacco Free Research Institute.

Other research in 2012 shown a significant 12% reduction in hospital admissions for acute coronary syndrome just one year following the introduction of Ireland’s ban and again two years later a further 13% drop in acute coronary syndrome admissions was recorded.

We hope you can join us for this talk and Q&A session – please register via Eventbrite - as places are strictly limited. Please stipulate if you require lunch and if you have any dietary requirements when reserving your place.


Medical School Lecture Theatre, Level 7, Worsley Building, Clarendon Way, Leeds, LS2 9JT