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Table 4 Arguments given to explain why smoking does not cause cancer

From: Knowledge and experience of cancer prevention and screening among Gypsies, Roma and Travellers: a participatory qualitative study

Cancer is God’s will ‘Some say that the people who smoke, get it, right? I myself think that it comes from God. If he wants us to be sick, we will be.’ P1-Roma, F28
Children can develop cancer ‘I know a young girl that, um, had quite a healthy lifestyle, very young girl and got Stage 4 … it happens in children as well, so, they’ve never smoked, they’ve never drunk, they’re not overweight … So, we just don’t know do we?’ P17-Gypsy, F30
Cancer is due to genetics ‘I think it’s hereditary. They says it ain’t but it is.’ P15-Gypsy, F69
Non-smokers can develop cancer ‘At least four to my knowing, maybe more, of my own family and my husband’s family were non-smokers, and only had a drink over Christmas time, and they all died with cancer.’ P12-Traveller, F60
Stopping smoke can cause cancer ‘My auntie stopped smoking, she died a couple of months after with lung cancer … So, her smoking never caused it.’ P13-Gypsy/Traveller, M21
Evidence is inadequate ‘There is a few things that actually can cause but it’s not proven, such as smoking.’ P23-Gypsy, F18