Non-job of the week

Guardian non-jobs 2009 3.6.09 As of writing the Guardian jobs website is advertising 527 jobs this week as you can see from the box on the right.  The pick of the crop this week, and our non-job of the week, comes from Brent council:


Brent Tobacco Control Alliance Co-ordinator


From £34,045 - £43,529 p.a. inc.


(NHS Band 7) fixed-term 3 years


Brent Council and NHS Brent are seeking to recruit a highly motivated individual to the post of Tobacco Control Alliance Co-ordinator.


We are looking for a charismatic and dynamic individual with the ability to communicate to a diverse community.


You will lead the effective development, coordination and implementation of Smoke Free Brent in partnership with a range of agencies and organisations, including statutory, voluntary, community and business sector.


The focus will be to reduce smoking prevalence in Brent. This role will require you to be able to undertake some evenings and may include some weekend working. You must be a non-smoker.


A 5-minute presentation will be required at interview; the successful interviewees will be notified of the presentation title.


For an informal discussion about this position, please contact Kostakis Christodoulou, Head of Health Promotion, NHS Brent on 020 8795 6118 or Yogini Patel, Deputy Head of Environmental Health, Brent Council on 020 8937 5262.


Closing date: 17 June 2009.


Interview date: 26 June 2009.


To apply, go to




The council welcomes applications from all sections of the community”


While it’s commendable that there have been several public education programmes about the effects tobacco, it’s another thing entirely to use our money to try to create smoke-free boroughs. 


The government has put its case consistently that it would prefer people not to smoke.  Fair enough.  It ‘nudges’ us when it increases cigarette duty and rolls out public advertising campaigns.  For these departments to propagandise to taxpayers and to encourage ‘stakeholders’ to go smoke free, however, is a step too far.  Whatever happened to choice?  There is enough information out there for people to make up their own minds about smoking.  We read anecdotal stories about the chain smokers who live to 100 and the fanatical exercise junkies who drop dead of heart failure at 30.  No council or government body can control the quite legal and socially acceptable habits of its citizens. 


Some people will smoke regardless of the dangers; some just don’t like it as a habit and will never light a cigarette.  That’s life, and no government has a right – or an effective role – to try and manage lifestyles.  In the philosophical sense it’s the nanny state at its most literal and intrusive, in the practical sense it will just turn out to be a waste of money.

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