Many council playgrounds smoke free

  • Deborah Condon

Most county council and city council playgrounds have decided to go smoke free, following a request by anti-smoking group, ASH Ireland.

According to ASH, two years ago, it contacted all county and city council playgrounds and encouraged them to voluntarily introduce a smoke-free policy in their local playgrounds.

"We can now confirm that 75% of county councils and 60% of city councils have decided to introduce smoke-free playgrounds in response to our request. This is a most positive response and we fully appreciate that this initiative has been taken voluntarily by these bodies, not requiring any changes in local or national regulations," explained Dr Ross Morgan, chairman of ASH.

He said that many councils had either implemented the policy or committed to implementing it in the near future.

"We do hope that all county and city councils will embrace and implement this initiative in the near future," Dr Morgan added.

The organisation insisted that children are influenced by the normalisation of smoking. However, when smoking among adults is restricted, particularly in areas used by children, this ‘de-normalises' the habit.

It also reduces tobacco-related litter in children's play areas.

Heath Minister James Reilly will launch a policy document later today outlining the Government's plans to discourage young people from starting to smoke.

 

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