Smokers pulled like weeds from public spaces

A rose growing in a vegetable garden is considered a weed and in Auckland’s outdoor cabbage patches of the CBD, beaches and al fresco dining Auckland’s roses smokers are no longer welcome.

“A rose by any other name would smell as sweet”

-Shakespeare

Auckland Council is fighting to butt out cigarettes by 2025.

…Auckland Council is putting measures in place to make beaches, urban centres and al fresco dining areas smokefree areas by 2018.

Urban centres includes the CBD, metropolitan centres, town centres and neighbourhood centres.

Smoking is already banned from a range of public places including civic squares, plazas, parks, playgrounds and skateparks. Council-owned facilities including train stations and bus shelters are also smokefree.

…Auckland Council social policy and bylaws manager Mike Sinclair said there would be designated areas made available for smokers.

…Sinclair said a report would be presented to council’s regulatory committee in September to consider whether a bylaw was needed so smokers caught breaking the rules could be fined.

The Government also has a goal of New Zealand becoming smokefree by 2025.

The only way to become smoke-free is either prohibition (which we know from history does not work ) or to incentivise Tobacco companies to switch to e-cigarettes (which is something that they already want to do.) If the government are really serious about their smoke-free target they could easily achieve it by substituting cigarette smoke for vapour.

Hospitality New Zealand Auckland regional manager Nadine Mehlhopt said given cigarettes were still legal Auckland Council did not have the right to banish smoking from privately owned al fresco areas.

“Thus, this policy would hugely disadvantage businesses with publicly owned al fresco dining areas,” Mehlhopt said.

Mehlhopt said Auckland was not ready for the smokefree policy.

“By and large our customers still want smoking areas – this is just another example of Auckland Council using their big stick. ”

The policy would also mean more smokers standing on sidewalks and throwing their cigarette butts onto the street, she said.

…Members of social networking website Neighbourly were divided on the issue.

Rachel Reid from Panmure said “leave smokers alone – we are already treated as second class citizens”.

…”In open air, in an open space, I do not see why people in a free country should not be able to smoke,” Farahbod said.

Danielle Kanamala from Meadowbank said Kiwis should not have to breath in secondhand smoke in public spaces and workplaces.

“Even though these government bans may limit the freedom of some, at times they are necessary for public safety,” Kanamala said.

 – Stuff


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