more information Want to read the full bylaw? Read it at bit.ly/bylaw1767.
Why a bylaw to regulate smoking? Quesnel supports healthy community initiatives for its residents! Through integrated processes like parks planning, active transportation planning, the recently adopted Living Wage Policy, and our active rebranding project, the City of Quesnel is positioning itself as a balanced, healthy community in which to live, work, and play. The new smoke-free bylaw and the work supported by the Partnering for Healthier Communities grant fits into this approach. Exposure to second-hand smoke from burning tobacco products causes disease and premature death among non-smokers. Children are particularly vulnerable to second-hand smoke as they breathe faster and are exposed to even more smoke. The new bylaw reduces the harmful effects of tobacco smoke for the residents and visitors of Quesnel.
Supportive smoke-free environments help people who have quit using tobacco to remain steadfast and also encourage tobacco users to quit. Education today on the harmful effects of smoking and second-hand smoke is key to ensuring our children don’t start smoking and helps to make everyone aware of our environment. The bylaw also helps reduce the amount of litter from butts and discarded cigarette packaging. Cigarette filters litter the ground and do not biodegrade. During the hot, dry summer months, smoke-free bylaws can also reduce the risk of fire from discarded matches and tobacco products. As with any new initiative, there has been some push back and enforcement issues. To date, bylaw staff in Quesnel have addressed this with education and they will be transitioning to ticketing. The City of Quesnel partnered with Northern Health and many other community stakeholders to form the Quesnel Healthier Community Committee in 2012. In 2016, this committee received a Partnering for Healthier Communities grant from Northern Health for their “Creating a Tobacco-Free Community” initiative. The committee resolved to use the grant funding for education and to purchase and install signage in strategic public areas. The committee decided that a sign that portrayed those most at risk from the harmful effects of second-hand smoke would move the focus to social conscience. Does your local government have a Healthier Community Committee? How can your local government work with partners towards your community’s healthy living goals?
The new smoke-free bylaw was promoted through the City’s Bylaw of the Month campaign.
28 Healthier You
Have questions about smoke- and vape-free outdoor public places? Download a Q&A from the Canadian Cancer Society at bit.ly/SmokeFreePlaces