Council to expand smokefree areas

Smokefree public spaces are coming to Auckland.

The Auckland Council has approved a new policy for the region that will incrementally make public outdoor spaces smokefree.

The policy will be implemented in three phases.

Stage one is already in place.

It covers outdoor facilities such as stadiums, swimming pools, playgrounds, skate parks, sports fields and parks and reserves becoming smokefree.

Public outdoor areas associated with the council such as service centres, libraries, community facilities and halls, museums, and transport areas including train stations and bus platforms are also included.

Stage two will take effect in 2015 and will include shared spaces and all plazas and civic squares.

It's proposed stage three will include banning smoking in areas around sports clubs, al fresco dining areas, urban centres, public beaches and common areas of council housing.

The policy will rely on social pressure from the public to encourage others to comply.

Councillor Sandra Coney says an Auckland-wide smokefree policy will create a healthier, more enjoyable city for all.

Manukau Courier