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C.S.L smokes out air pollution

March 2012

Recognizing the danger from second-hand smoke, Côte St. Luc is about to usher in the toughest anti-smoking legislation in Quebec.

City council unanimously supported the smoking ban at a regular meeting last month. Once the signs go up this spring, smoking will be banned within 20 metres of the town’s playgrounds, athletic fields and municipal swimming pool.

Smoking also will be forbidden in public parks during special events, such as Canada Day celebrations.

Those who disobey the bylaw face a $50 fine, doubled for repeat offenders.

City councilor Steven Erdelyi, who sponsored the bylaw, said “smoke in a public place, even outdoors, is a nuisance for all those close to the smoker. Our new bylaw … makes it possible for people to better enjoy outdoors, whether at a child’s soccer game or at large public events like a winter carnival activity.”

Responses to the news were mainly enthusiastic, though some who reacted to news stories wondered about enforcement. (The city will depend on the honour system but reserves the right to issue tickets. Citizen complaints should spur local inspectors to act.)

Others complained that pollution from vehicle exhaust has far greater toxic potential or said this province is suffering from over-regulation.

But most who responded online to the CBC and CTV news stories endorsed the move, saying the right not to be on the receiving end of someone’s cigarette, pipe or cigar smoke ought to supersede the individual’s right to light up.



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