Tobacco companies resist excise tax increase and refuse to pass on increased costs

The excise tax on tobacco products increased on January 1 2018, but the increase hasn't been passed on to all retail products. New Zealand's largest Māori Public Health organisation, Hāpai Te Hauora, is concerned that this will limit the effectiveness of the tax increase to reduce smoking rates, and that tobacco companies should be forced to increase the prices of their products by the total percentage of the tax increase and the consumer price index (CPI).

Addressing cheap alcohol needs to be on the table

Alcohol Healthwatch and Maori Public Health provider Hapai te Hauora strongly support the new Government’s commitment to addressing the growing needs and inequities surrounding mental health and addictions.

Anthony Hawke of Hapai te Hauora says, “The announcement of the Mental Health Inquiry is opportune as we mark the 5th birthday of our new liquor laws. The links between our growing problem with drinking and poor mental health need to be addressed. The Government was right to include addictions into the inquiry into mental health. In 2012 we had the chance to raise the price of alcohol and save lives. We didn't. Our communities paid the price. Now is the time for this to be remedied.”

Hāpai Te Hauora warns of risks of online gambling products supplied by the Lotteries Commission

Hāpai Te Hauora, has grave concerns for consumers of online gambling products recently launched by the Lotteries Commission. Hāpai work in problem gambling harm minimisation at a national and regional level, and they believe these products have immense potential for harm.

Reconsideration of student drug testing policy welcomed

Hāpai Te Hauora a national public health organisation congratulates Rotorua based Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology, for reconsidering their student drug testing policy.

Drug testing should not be a barrier for young people considering a career in the trade industry . Although Hāpai understands the need for drug testing for safety reasons, a compassionate approach is recommended , where any positive drug test results are followed up with offers of counselling and other appropriate supports to move students away from possible addiction, and into there chosen career pathway.

Hapai Te Hauora offers to educate bus drivers on breastfeeding rights

Hāpai Te Hauora slams the appalling behaviour of an Auckland bus driver this week who kicked a breastfeeding mother off his bus. "This is simply unacceptable," says Fay Selby-Law General Manager for the National SUDI Prevention Coordination Service at Hāpai Te Hauora "we should be supporting our mums to breastfeed, not shaming and stigmatising them. I can’t believe a mum and her baby were left on the side of the road in this hot weather by a publicly funded transport company. This is a disgrace."