PEEL OUTDOOR SMOKING BY-LAW STARTS SEPT. 2

(Aug. 27, 2013) – Enjoy outdoor activities and access municipal services without worrying about the harmful effects of second-hand smoke. Thanks to the Peel Outdoor Smoking By-law, whether you’re in the game, in the stands or returning a library book, it’ll be smoke-free!

The Peel Outdoor Smoking By-law makes it illegal to smoke outdoors within nine metres (30 feet) of municipally-owned building entrances and exits, and within nine metres of the perimeter of playgrounds and sports/activity areas, such as sports fields, parks and splash pads.

“We are working towards a healthier environment for everyone in Peel. The Peel Outdoor Smoking By-law removes harmful second-hand smoke from areas where children play, as well as entrances to libraries, arenas, community centres and other municipal buildings,” says Dr. David Mowat, Medical Officer of Health, Region of Peel.

There is no safe level of second-hand smoke, and it is most harmful to children because their lungs are smaller and they breathe more rapidly than adults. Children exposed to second-hand smoke are more likely to develop asthma, ear infections, bronchitis and pneumonia.

In collaboration with the Cities of Mississauga and Brampton, and the Town of Caledon, the Region of Peel joins approximately 90 other Ontario municipalities that have enacted legislation restricting outdoor smoking.

The by-law applies to all forms of lit tobacco (e.g., cigarettes, cigars, pipes). Enforcement staff from each municipality and the Region of Peel can give tickets and fines to people who break the law. The fine for breaking the law ranges from $250 to $5,000.

“Smoke-free places protect the health of the community while supporting smokers who want to quit,” continues Dr. Mowat. “Smokers who are motivated to quit can be successful with a supportive environment and a proven cessation method. It is never too late to quit smoking.”

In the past year, just over half of Peel’s smokers (88,000 people) attempted to stop smoking for at least 24 hours. Many smokers attempt to quit several times before they are successful.

Peel has a variety of supports for residents wanting to quit smoking, including family physicians, six family health teams and the Smokers’ Helpline. For information about quitting smoking, contact Smokers’ Helpline at 1-877-513-5333 or visit SmokersHelpline.ca.

For more information on the by-law, visit SmokeFreePeelRegion.ca or call Peel Public Health at 905-799-7700.

The Regional Municipality of Peel was incorporated in 1974 on the principle that certain community and infrastructure services are most cost-effectively administered over a larger geographic area. The Region of Peel serves more than one million residents in the Cities of Mississauga and Brampton and the Town of Caledon.

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