TORONTO, Nov. 7, 2014 /CNW/ - The Canadian Cancer Society welcomes new regulations introduced today that will strengthen the Smoke-Free Ontario Act by banning smoking on patios, playgrounds and sports fields and the sale of tobacco at post-secondary schools.
"We applaud the government of Ontario for introducing courageous new tobacco control measures that will help denormalize tobacco use and provide greater protection from outdoor second-hand smoke for Ontarians," says Rowena Pinto, Vice-President, Public Affairs, Canadian Cancer Society, Ontario Division. "We need to continue to work together against the Number One cause of preventable disease, death and cancer in this province."
Studies show that nearly all smokers start using tobacco before the age of 18. The proposed regulations will help prevent youth smoking and protect Ontarians from exposure to second-hand smoke.
"Creating smoke-free outdoor spaces and patios not only protects the public and workers from second-hand smoke but also reduces social exposure to smoking behaviour. The less that youth are exposed to adult smoking, the less likely they are to view it as normal behaviour and to start smoking," says Pinto.
A recent study, funded in part by the Canadian Cancer Society, has found that individuals who are attempting to quit smoking are more likely to relapse when exposed to smoking on patios.
"As the Canadian Cancer Society offers support to help smokers quit through our Smokers' Helpline, we know how difficult it can be", says Pinto. "Smelling or seeing people smoking can trigger a recent quitter or a former smoker's sensory cues and send them into relapse."
Proposed regulations will also expand the number of places prohibited to sell tobacco by banning the sale of tobacco products on university and college campuses. Restricting the sale of tobacco on post-secondary campuses will help further prevent youth smoking especially amongst young adults.
While these regulations are a step in the right direction, the Society encourages the government to keep it going by reintroducing and swiftly passing legislation to ban all flavoured tobacco products including menthol in Ontario.
About the Canadian Cancer Society
The Canadian Cancer Society is a national community-based organization dedicated to preventing cancer, saving lives and supporting people living with cancer through research funding, services and advocacy. We are Canada's largest charity fighting all types of cancer and leading authority on cancer statistics and information. To learn more, call 1 888 939-3333 or visit www.cancer.ca.
SOURCE: Canadian Cancer Society (Ontario Division)
For further information: MEDIA CONTACT: Christine Koserski, Communications Specialist, Canadian Cancer Society, Ontario Division, 416-323-7030; [email protected]; Follow us @CCS_media