Province To Ban Smoking On Patios File Photo

Ontario will ban smoking on bar and restaurant patios, playgrounds and sports fields.

The changes take effect January 1, 2015, and come under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, which seeks to limit smoking in public places to protect children from the harmful effects of second hand smoke.

The changes will prohibit tobacco sales on Ontario university and college campuses, double fines for selling cigarettes to minors and ban all sales of candy and fruit-flavoured tobacco products.

“Smoke-free patios are a critical next step in protecting servers and the public from toxic second-hand tobacco smoke,” says Michael Perley, director of the Ontario Campaign for Action on Tobacco. “Equally important, they’ll remove tobacco use as an apparently normal part of friends and families enjoying socializing over food and drinks. Tobacco industry products, with no safe level of use and which kill one in two long-term users, are anything but normal. Kudos to the minister and the government for this progressive move forward.”

The current by-law in London prohibits smoking within 9 m of recreation amenities in city parks and entrances to city-owned buildings. However, it does not ban smoking on bar and restaurant patios.