As of January 1st 2015, the Ontario government has put in place new regulations to protect the public from tobacco and its harmful effects.
The new regulations that have been added to the Smoke-Free Ontario Act have made it illegal to smoke on bar and restaurant patios, and on (and within 20 metres of) playgrounds, and public sports fields and surfaces. Selling tobacco on the campuses of postsecondary education institutions is now illegal as well.
Strengthening the ban on smoking in bars, restaurants, playgrounds and public sports fields
In the past, smoking was only banned on covered or partially covered patios in Ontario. The new regulations have made it illegal to smoke on all outdoor bar and restaurant patios.
The province has also banned smoking on and around playgrounds, public sport fields and surfaces. The ban applies to all outdoor public sports facilities such as basketball courts, baseball and soccer fields, ice rinks, tennis courts, splash pads and swimming pools that are owned by a municipality, the province or a postsecondary education institution. Besides sport fields, it is also illegal to smoke on sport surfaces, in spectator areas around sport fields and 20 metres surrounding these locations. The ban includes playgrounds at hotels, motels and inns as well.
Banning the sale of tobacco products on school campuses
Ontario’s Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care has also banned the sale of tobacco products on the campuses of postsecondary education institutions, such as colleges and universities. The new regulations apply to buildings and areas that are owned or leased by postsecondary education institutions or student unions and that are used for students’ education programs, recreational activities or residential services.
For more information about Ontario’s new smoking regulations, visit www.eohu.ca.