Recently, Mayor and Council received a presentation from Northern Health and the Canadian Cancer Society regarding the harmful effects of second-hand smoke and to further encourage the adoption of a smoke free outdoor spaces bylaw.
In keeping with the City’s mission to provide a healthy environment for all generations, the City is considering strengthening its current smoking regulation bylaw. The changes proposed are similar to those in many communities in BC and provide a gold standard when it comes to promoting a healthy environment for our citizens and visitors.
What is new?
Created with input from the Canadian Cancer Society and Northern Health, key points being proposed include:
- Banning smoking in public open spaces where children may be present, such as City parks, trails or sports fields.
- Further restricting smoking at special public events like beer gardens.
- Expanding the smoke-free buffer zone around public entrances, windows and air intakes to 7.5m from the current 3m. The 3m buffer zone would still apply to other business entranceways that are not meant for the public (ie. laneway doors and loading docks).
- Like most City bylaws, this would also be enforced based on complaint. Should there be a need for a fine, the minimum fine would increase to $150 from $50.
How Will This Affect My Business?
Business owners and their employees will be asked to take steps to ensure that smoking does not take place on their premises or within 7.5 meters of the public entrance, including posting signage according to the bylaw.
Employees are still able to smoke outside non-public entrances provided they maintain the 3m buffer zone prescribed in Provincial legislation.
If you would like to read the full text of the proposed bylaw you can find it here.
When does this bylaw take effect?
The Bylaw will go before Council for consideration of third reading on November 3rd. The public is encouraged to provide their feedback by October 28th.
After consideration of all feedback and making any necessary amendments, the goal is to have it adopted by the end of 2014 with a 6 month grace period to allow time for posting of signs and education etc.
- Attend a forum hosted by Northern Lights College nursing students on October 23rd from 10:00 am – 12:00 noon at the Energy House, Northern Lights College regarding second hand smoke. Council and City staff will also be in attendance to answer questions.
- Second-hand smoke information: Canadian Cancer Society Website
- Smoking and Health Action Foundation – The Evolution of Smoke Free Outdoor Spaces
- Canadian Cancer Society and Northern Health’s 2013 presentation to City Council
If you would like to tell us what you think or if you have questions you can complete our Feedback Form and drop it off at City Hall or email it back to us email@example.com. Or, if you would prefer to chat you can call Brenda Ginter, Director of Corporate Administration at 250-784-3614. All submissions must be received by Tuesday October 28th at 4:00 pm.
We value your opinions!