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Friday, 23 November 1979
Page: 2881


Senator MCAULIFFE (QUEENSLAND) - My question, which is directed to the Minister representing the Minister for Health, is prompted by a report tabled recently in the Senate entitled 'Health Promotion in Australia 1978-79', issued by the Commonwealth Department of Health, distributed by the Australian Government Publishing Service and printed by the Government Printer. Is the Minister aware of the part of the report on page 132 which refers to 'Phantom-like campaigners who transform cigarette billboard advertisements into hard-hitting anti-smoking messages'? The report goes on to describe these people as 'resourceful advertisers, equipped with their wit and cans of spray paint'. I know the attitude of parliamentarians to anyone who interferes with their election signs so I ask the Minister to ask her colleague the Minister for Health what his attitude is towards that reference and whether he is aware that, if a statement is not made on it, it could be interpreted as being the policy of the Department and those people whose property is being attacked may be forced into the position of having to protect their property. While the Minister is making representations to the Minister for Health will she also ask him whether he does not think his Department is over-reacting to and being emotional regarding this advertising campaign? What health motive is there in the campaign literature distributed among school children in the Hunter region of New South Wales which says: 'Kiss a Non-Smoker . . . Taste the Difference '?


Senator GUILFOYLE - Senator McAuliffehas raised a matter of great importance. I am not aware of the statements on page 132 of the report 'Health Promotion in Australia 1978-79'. I am aware, as I think every honourable senator is, of the close interest of the Senate in this matter. I can only suggest that perhaps a reference to the Senate Standing Committee on Social Welfare, that is, to Senator Baume and his diligent senators, may assist in resolving some of the points that have been raised. For instance, if the Senate Committee were aware of the concern of Senator McAuliffe, I feel sure that it would take action to see that the matters raised in this report were given close attention. As far as people protecting their property is concerned, I think that is probably a matter for another Minister to determine. As for the advice to school children, that probably comes within the province of my colleague Senator Carrick and it will be for him to make a determination.







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