This project was conducted by Miriama Matagi Tomasi (Ama), supervised by Janet Hoek and Patrick Vakaoti.
Miriama undertook talanoa with 16 Pacific young people (n=13 Samoan; n=14 non-smokers) who discussed their knowledge and observations of smoking and tobacco supply. While they viewed smoking negatively and saw it as unattractive and misaligned with cultural values, they recognised it helped some young people manage stresses they experienced and were careful to avoid passing judgment on others. These stresses included stressful responsibilities their aiga had; many spoke of stereotyping and racism causing stress that affected their day-to-day wellbeing.
Although most did not smoke, they reported easy access to tobacco through their aiga or peers; others they knew also accessed tobacco, via friends, family and affiliates, using social, commercial, and social-commercial supply routes. Participants offered advice they thought could help young people remain smokefree and resist offers of tobacco; they suggested remembering their cultural and religious values, and recognising they could define themselves without using a product that would undermine who they were and the person they aspired to be.