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BEYONCE AD UNDER FIRE

 

Cancer experts want advertisements for Beyonce Knowles' Australian tour to be banned for promoting smoking.

 

The billboard and newspaper advertisements show the pop diva in a glamorous pose with a cigarette in a long, old-fashioned holder in one hand.

 

Queensland Cancer Fund tobacco issues co-ordinator Catherine Mahony said the image could encourage young women to smoke.

 

"While it doesn't break any laws, we're disappointed Beyonce has tried to portray this kind of image to her Queensland audience," Ms Mahony said.

 

"There are other ways she can create this image without having to use tobacco products."

 

Beyonce was portraying smoking as "sexy and cool" in the advertisements, she said.

 

"Young women in particular are influenced by what they see in the media," Ms Mahony said.

 

"So it doesn't help that they are regularly exposed to images such as celebrities smoking.

 

"With young women, image issues usually win out over health issues and it can actually be a prompt for them to start smoking."

 

Australian Medical Association Queensland's Shaun Rudd said the "thoughtless" advertisements should be scrapped.

 

"It's unfortunate that someone like her, who is a high-profile celebrity and role model, has cigarettes in their advertisements in this day and age. She doesn't need to get attention like that," Dr Rudd said.

 

"We seem to have been able to reduce the number of young men starting smoking, but with young women we're having difficulty. That is not going to help."

 

The trend for young women to take up smoking in Queensland is such a concern that the State Government recently launched a Feeling Good campaign to combat the problem.

 

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