Engaging with Aboriginal Shire Councils in remote Cape York communities to address smoke-free environments

Kiarah E. Cuthbert, Clare Brown, Melinda Hammond, Tiffany A. Williams, Desmond Tayley, Eileen Deemal-Hall, David P. Thomas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The high prevalence and health effect of tobacco smoking and secondhand smoke exposure among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is well known. Due to its significance, the responsibility of tackling smoking among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should not remain solely with health service providers. The creation of supportive environments and collaboration beyond the health sector are critical elements of comprehensive primary health care practised by Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services. This paper discusses how Apunipima Cape York Health Council worked with three Aboriginal Shire Councils to create more smoke-free places, using local working groups, information sessions and community-based health promotion. The flexibility and the time allocated to the engagement process with councils, community leaders, organisations and community members were important. All three communities acknowledged the benefits of role modelling and working together to improve health, with addressing tobacco smoking seen as 'everyone's business' and 'not just service providers'. Aboriginal Shire Councils can play a critical role, in partnership with Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services, in creating healthy places that enable healthy choices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)419-423
Number of pages5
JournalAustralian Journal of Primary Health
Volume25
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 4 Oct 2019

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