IS SMOKING GOING UP IN SMOKE?
Youth and adult smoking rates have been on a steady decrease since 1999, and with a continued strong tobacco control strategy in place, we can only hope this trend will continue.
What is the key reason for the decline? Many factors play a role, however one study found that 36% of people who quit smoking stated that municipal bylaws were the primary reason for quitting. This is good news for residents of Grey and Bruce Counties who have been protected by such legislation for almost 2 years now. Cigarette smoking kills 45,000 Canadians annually. Smoking-related disease and illness puts a large burden on our already overloaded health care system.
The Ontario government has promised provincial smoke-free legislation within 3 years and Ontario will not be the first province to enact such a law. Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and British Columbia already have province-wide smoking bans in place. In October, Manitoba and New Brunswick will introduce 100% smoke-free legislation in all public places including restaurants, bars, private clubs, bingo halls and casinos. Saskatchewan will follow on January 1, 2005.
One thing is certain: a stringent province-wide smoking ban will be welcome news to many. It will eliminate the economic frustration of business owners affected by competitors in bordering counties with different smoke-free bylaws and ensure that everyone is protected by the same legislation.
If you have questions or concerns regarding the Grey and Bruce Smoke-free Bylaws or would like information about smoking cessation, please call Public Health at 376-9420 or 1-800-263-3456, or visit our website at www.publichealthgreybruce.on.ca
We work with the Grey Bruce community to protect and promote health