La Trobe University is a founding signatory and the first university to sign up to the world’s first Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge.


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Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge Signed by La Trobe University

La Trobe University is a founding signatory and the first university to sign up to the world’s first Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge.

The Pledge’s aim is to ‘de-normalise’ tobacco by ending all business and financial ties with the industry, and reduce the annual death toll of 7 million who die from preventable, tobacco-related illnesses.

Launched on 26 September at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, finance leaders joined with world leaders from government and health to launch The Pledge, with over 120 Founding Signatories and supporters.

La Trobe Vice-Chancellor Professor John Dewar said the University is proud to be a founding signatory to this important global initiative whose ambition is to stop the global tobacco epidemic.

“At La Trobe we strongly support and implement an anti-tobacco funding policy; we do not, and will not, promote tobacco or smoking through our research and teaching, nor do we accept financing from tobacco companies,” Professor Dewar said.

“And as part of our role in taking on the challenges of environmental sustainability and health awareness in the La Trobe community, we implement a smoke-free policy across all of our campuses.”

Mr Mark Engel, La Trobe University’s Chief Marketing Officer and Chair of Tobacco-Free Portfolios, was in New York to sign The Pledge on behalf of the University.

“I am delighted to have been able to sign up La Trobe as the first university to this important Pledge, alongside some of the world’s most influential finance leaders,” Mr Engel said.

About the Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge

The Tobacco-Free Finance Pledge encourages signatories to consider the adoption of tobacco-free finance policies across lending, insurance and investment, in line with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

The ultimate goal is to reduce the current annual death toll of 7 million people a year dying from tobacco-related illnesses. According to the World Health Organization, tobacco consumption is the single largest preventable cause of death.

The Pledge was initiated by not-for-profit Tobacco Free Portfolios, with CEO and Radiation Oncologist Dr. Bronwyn King and her team developing The Pledge in collaboration with UN agencies and finance sector leaders AXA, BNP Paribas, AMP Capital and Natixis.

The Pledge has over 120 Founding Signatories and Supporters including financial institutions from around the world collectively representing trillions of dollars of capital, including assets under management of over $6.4 trillion.

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