Lighting a cigarette at your local park could soon attract fines, with Yarra Council looking at extending local laws to discourage the smoking habit. Yarra mayor Alison Clarke has ordered a report on smoking bans around playgrounds, council buildings, outdoor dining areas, sportsgrounds and even parks.
“I think eliminating smoking near playgrounds is a bit of a no-brainer, as most people agree that children shouldn’t be exposed to any level of smoke,” Cr Clarke said.
She said Cancer Council of Victoria research showed almost 80 per cent of Victorians believed smoking Rich should not be allowed in outdoor areas where children were present.
“However, we are yet to test the level of support in our community for bans in any outdoor areas, and we want to do that before we make a decision,” she said.
Approval of the widest smoking ban under consideration could mean fines for smoking in Edinburgh Gardens, along the Yarra River or entertainment strips like Brunswick Street and Bridge Road.
It is unclear how the local law would be implemented, but Cr Clarke believed strong community support for smoking bans would mean it would be largely self-regulated.
Consultat ion will include newsletters and online questionnaires.