Smokers in Hackney urged to give quitting a go this Stoptober and join thousands of others doing the same

More than 40,000 people in Hackney who smoke are being encouraged to give up cigarettes during Stoptober and use the range of free resources and support available rather than going cold turkey. Quitting with support is much more effective than doing it on your own, and if you can stop smoking for 28-days you are five times more likely to stay smoke-free for good.

Deborah James, a nurse living in Hackney and who gave up last Stoptober, said: “I’d been thinking about stopping for 10 years, and I knew I’d need support, especially in the initial stages, so I got in touch with Smokefree Hackney. The advisor helped me focus to avoid relapsing. The best thing about quitting smoking is that I breathe more easily, smell better and have more energy.”

Hackney has one of the highest smoking rates in London. In some communities such as the Turkish and Kurdish speaking populations, smoking is seen as a cultural norm, making it that much harder to quit. 

42-year-old Enrique Stallard from Haggerston successfully quit his 30-year smoking habit with the help of Smokefree Hackney. He said: “I smoked about 20-25 cigarettes day, sometimes more if I was stressed at work or when I was bored, which I didn’t even realise until I had my first session with the Stop Smoking Advisor, which was a surprise. I decided to quit when I started to think, this is a bit of a dirty habit, standing in a corner desperate to smoke, and it’s costing me money that I don’t want to waste anymore. 

“Visiting the Stop Smoking Service in Hackney was easy, I just popped into my local clinic in my lunch break; I didn’t have to fill a form or make an appointment, I could go and talk to the advisor. The advisor listens to you and helps you come up with a plan that works for you . I’m really glad I went in and had that talk in the first place. I look at people smoking now and I think ‘Oh mate, you need to pack it in!’”

This year, a number of vape stores in the borough, in partnership with Smokefree Hackney are offering a 15% discount on starter kits to anyone wishing to quit with an e-cigarette with the stop smoking service. Vaping can help reduce people’s health risks and according to research carried out by Public Health England is up to 95 per cent safer than smoking tobacco. The selected Vape stores can be found at: https://www.smokefreehackney.org/support

For smokers who live, study or work in the borough, Smokefree Hackney offers free medication (prescription charges may apply) and one to one support for up to 12 weeks. There are stop smoking clinics located across Hackney, in GP practices, pharmacies, Homerton hospital and other community settings. People can find their nearest clinic at: https://www.smokefreehackney.org/support or call freephone: 0800 046 99 46 / 020 3316 1085 or email smokefreehackney@nhs.net

People can also get support online. Search ‘Stoptober’ and choose from a range of support tools to suit you such as the Personal Quit Plan and the smokefree app. 

For more information about the Stoptober campaign visit: https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/for-your-body/quit-smoking/stoptober/

Cllr Feryal Clark, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care, Leisure and Parks
Smoking can be an extremely hard habit to break but with the support of our local services and with so many options available, now is the best time to give quitting a go. It is the best thing you can do for your health and lifestyle.
Cllr Feryal Clark, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care, Leisure and Parks