Second-Hand Smoke, Smoke-Free Spaces and the Law

 New smoke and vape-free regulations
 

Starting October 17, 2018, amendments to the Smoke-Free Ontario Act (SFOA) prohibits the use of vapour products (vaping or electronic cigarettes) or holding lighted cannabis in the same places that tobacco smoking is banned, including public places, workplaces and on outdoor bar and restaurant patios. The new provincial regulations also prohibits smoking and vaping within 9 metres from an outdoor bar or restaurant patio and within 20 metres from the perimeter of a school or a community recreation facility.

No-smoking and vaping laws and regulations protect children and non-smokers from the hazards of exposure from second-hand smoke and the potential health impacts of vaping.

Note that existing City of Ottawa smoke-free regulations remain in effect including no smoking, vaping or water-pipe (hookah) use on all municipal properties such as parks, playgrounds, beaches, sports fields and ByWard and Parkdale Market stands.

For more information on the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017, please visit the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care’s website at ontario.ca/smokefree.   For help to quit smoking, visit myquit.ca or call 1-877-376-1701.  

Second-Hand Smoke Facts

There is NO Safe Level of Second-Hand Smoke.

Second-hand smoke affects the health of everyone, especially children and the elderly. Second-hand smoke can worsen the health of those with asthma, allergies and other respiratory conditions and is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.

Ready to Reduce Your Tobacco Use or Quit Altogether?

Hospitals provide a supportive smoke-free environment while offering support to patients and staff who want to quit smoking.
Community supports are available at myquit.ca or call 1-877-376-1701

Second-Hand Smoke Facts

Second-hand smoke (SHS) is the smoke exhaled by a smoker as well as the smoke from the burning tobacco. It contains more than 4,000 dangerous chemicals, 70 of which cause cancer.

There is no safe level of exposure, even outdoors. Exposure to second-hand smoke (SHS) can be as dangerous on restaurant patios, the beach or park as it is indoors. Cigarette butts can also contaminate sandboxes and beaches.

Studies show that smoke-free spaces can dramatically reduce heart attack rates and respiratory illnesses. Smoke-free spaces can:

  • protect non-smokers from the harmful effects of SHS
  • help smokers to quit
  • encourage former smokers to remain smoke-free
  • protect children from starting to smoke by providing good role models
  • reduce litter
Are you Exposed to Your Neighbour's Second-Hand Smoke?

The Smoke-Free Ontario Act prohibits smoking in common areas of condominiums, apartment buildings and college and university residences. Examples of common areas include elevators, stairwells, hallways, parking garages, laundry facilities, lobbies, exercise areas and party or entertainment rooms.

Second-hand smoke can easily transfer between units and can expose you to harmful second-hand smoke in your home. To learn how you can protect yourself from second-hand smoke, visit Smoke Free Housing Ontario

Promoting Smoke-Free Policies: A Guide for Workplaces

Making your business welcoming by keeping it free from second-hand smoke (SHS) shows you care about the health of others and the environment. There is no safe level of SHS-inside or outside.  Even a small amount of SHS can affect health.  Any employee or customer that passes by someone smoking will be exposed to SHS. Ottawa Public Health has developed a guide and signs to help employers protect their employees and customers from SHS at entrances and on outdoor property.

To obtain your free guide and signage, please send an email to tobacco@ottawa.ca.

Smoke-Free Regulations

No smoking and vaping laws and regulations in the City of Ottawa are designed to protect children and non-smokers from the hazards of exposure to second-hand smoke and potential health impact to exposure to vapour.

 

No Smoking

No Vaping

City of Ottawa parks and playgrounds

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

*Includes water pipes with tobacco or herbal

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

 

City of Ottawa sports fields and their seating area

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

*Includes water pipes with tobacco or herbal

Smoking is also prohibited 20 m from sports fields under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

 

City of Ottawa beaches

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

*Includes water pipes with tobacco or herbal

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

 

Municipal property

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

*Includes water pipes with tobacco or herbal

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

 

Parkdale and ByWard Markets

City of Ottawa ByWard Market By-law 2008-449

City of Ottawa Parkdale Market By-law 2008-448

 

Construction sites

Smoke-Free Ontario Act

(Only inside the enclosed spaces)

* individual sites may have additional restrictions

Hospital property

*Smoke-Free Ontario Act

* Smoking prohibited on all outdoor hospital property except in a designated smoking area. (On January 1, 2018, designated smoking areas will not be allowed).

* individual hospitals may have additional restrictions

Patios

City of Ottawa Smoke-Free Public Place By-law 2001-148

* individual businesses may have additional restrictions

Festivals, fairs and events

*City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

*Smoking is prohibited on City of Ottawa property, including water pipe smoking with tobacco or herbal

*City of Ottawa e-cigarette policy 

City of Ottawa Parks and Facilities By-law 2004-276

*Vaping is prohibited on City of Ottawa property

Post-secondary campuses

*Smoke-Free Ontario Act

*Smoking is prohibited inside workplaces and public places. Smoking is prohibited on and within 20 m of sports fields

* individual schools may have additional restrictions

Elementary and secondary school property

Smoke-Free Ontario Act

* individual schools may have additional restrictions

OC Transpo property

City of Ottawa Transit By-law 2007-286

City of Ottawa e-cigarette policy

Enclosed workplaces and public spaces

City of Ottawa Smoke-Free Public Place By-law 2001-148

* individual businesses may have additional restrictions

Work vehicles

 

Smoke-Free Ontario Act

* individual businesses may have additional restrictions

Vehicles with someone less than 16 years old present

Smoke-Free Ontario Act

 

Multi-unit housing

*Smoke-Free Ontario Act

*smoking is prohibited in common areas of multi-unit housing, including lobbies, hallways, stairwells and elevators.

*individual property owners may have additional restrictions

*individual property owners may have additional restrictions

Inside of hotels, motels and bed and breakfasts

*Smoke-Free Ontario Act

*smoking is prohibited in common areas, including lobbies, hallways, stairwells and elevators.

*individual hotels may have additional restrictions

*individual hotels may have additional restrictions

The smoke-free regulations apply 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Report a smoking violation or by calling 3-1

Report a Tobacco Violation

Report Smoking in Public or a Workplace

To report a smoking violation, please select from the following list of locations or situations:

Smoking at a City Facility/Property


Smoking in a Common Area


Smoking at a Hospital or Long Term Care Facility


Smoking at Restaurant, Bar, Patio


Smoking at a School


Smoking Shisha/Hookah


Smoking in the Workplace Violation

Please note that we will do our best to have a by-law officer attend your location, although it may not be possible for one to arrive in time. We are, however, tracking all reported violations of the smoke-free regulations and the information provided will help us to determine problem areas within the City. With this information, by-law officers can conduct focused enforcement efforts based on data collected from public complaints and from staff reports as well.

For more information

Please refer to the tobacco page, the Smoke-Free Public Places By-Law (no. 2001-148) or the Smoke-Free Workplaces By-Law (no. 2001-149) for more information.

Report Tobacco Sales to Minors

The sale of tobacco products, including in-store placement and advertising, is regulated by the Smoke-Free Ontario Act.

Report tobacco retail sales to minors

Please note that we will do our best to have a by-law officer attend your location, although it may not be possible for one to arrive in time. We are, however, tracking all reported violations of the smoke-free regulations and the information provided will help us to determine problem areas within the City. With this information, by-law officers can conduct focused enforcement efforts based on data collected from public complaints and from staff reports as well.

For more information

Please refer to the tobacco page for more information.

Report Tobacco Retail Signage Violation

The sale of tobacco products, including in-store placement and advertising, is regulated by the Smoke-Free Ontario Act.

Report tobacco retail signage violation

Please note that we will do our best to have a by-law officer attend your location, although it may not be possible for one to arrive in time. We are, however, tracking all reported violations of the smoke-free regulations and the information provided will help us to determine problem areas within the City. With this information, by-law officers can conduct focused enforcement efforts based on data collected from public complaints and from staff reports as well.

For more information

Please refer to the tobacco page for more information.

Request Smoke and Vape-Free Signage

Request tobacco signage

Enclosed workplaces and public places

 ImageDescription
Sign indicating no smoking and no vaping

Dual No Smoking, No Vaping Sticker

  • For enclosed workplaces and public places
  • 15 x 20 cm
  • Available as a sticker (sticky back) or window decal (sticky front)
 Sign indicating no smoking and no vaping  

Dual No Smoking, No Vaping Outdoor Metal Sign

  • For enclosed workplaces and public place
  • 25 x 30 cm
 No smoking symbol

No smoking sticker

  • For enclosed workplaces and public places
  • 10 x 10 cm
 Sign indicating no smoking on City of Ottawa property

No smoking metal sign for municipal property

  • For City of Ottawa municipal properties only
  • 30 x 45 cm
Tobacco and vapour product vendors
 ImageDescription
Sign indicating government ID with a photo and birth date must be shown when requested, and that you must be 19 years of age or older to purchase tobacco products.

 Tobacco vendor small sign

  • 2 stickers must be posted at the point of sale:
    • 1 facing the customer
    • 1 facing the clerk
  • For best results, place the sticker on a vertical surface
  • 9 x 18 cm
Sign indicating tobacco products are addictive, kill 50% of long-term smokers, and that it is illegal to sell or supply cigarettes to someone under the age of 19.

 Tobacco vendor large sign

  • 1 sticker must be posted visible by customer at the point of sale
  • 18 x 35 cm
Sign indicating government ID with a photo and birth date must be shown when requested, and that you must be 19 years of age or older to purchase e-cigarettes products.  Vapour product vendor small sign
  • 2 stickers must be posted at the point of sale:
    • 1 facing the customer
    • 1 facing the clerk
  • For best results, place the sticker on a vertical surface
  • 9 x 18 cm
Sign indicating that it is illegal to sell or supply e-cigarettes to someone under the age of 19. Vapour product vendor large sign
  • 1 sticker must be posted visible by customer at the point of sale
  • 18 x 35 cm
Festival and event signage
 ImageDescription
 A sign indicating that the event is smoke-free as a result of a City of Ottawa bylaw

Smoke-free event sign for City of Ottawa property

  • For events and festivals held on City of Ottawa property ONLY
  • 60 x 120 cm
 A clear sky and people partying at a concert overlaid with symbols indicating no vaping, smoking or cannabis use.

Smoke-free event sign for non-City of Ottawa property

  • For events held on federally owned property or private property only
  • 60 x 120 cm
Voluntary smoke-free entranceway signage
 ImageDescription
 No smoking symbol with text "No smoking near this entrance, thank you" in English and French

Voluntary smoke-free entrance sticker

  • For businesses who want to implement a voluntary smoke-free policy and create a buffer zone at their entrances and exits
  • 12 x 23 cm
 Image of an office building with the text "promoting smoke-free policies, a guide for workplaces"

Smoke-free policies (bilingual)

  • A bilingual guidebook for businesses who want to implement a voluntary smoke-free policy.
  • Booklet
Guide for Retailers

The Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017 (SFOA,2017) regulates the sale, supply, display and promotion of tobacco products and vapour products, as well as the smoking of tobacco, the use of electronic cigarettes, and the smoking of cannabis.

Retailers that sell tobacco and vapour products have a legal responsibility to ensure that they and their employees understand and comply with the requirements under the SFOA, 2017.

This guide is intended for owners and employees of retail businesses that sell tobacco products, tobacco product accessories, and/or vapour products. It is intended to help you understand the requirements of the SFOA, 2017 regarding the sale, supply, display and promotion of tobacco products and vapour products, as well as smoking and vaping restrictions for enclosed workplaces and enclosed public places.

Nothing in this guide should be interpreted as legal advice. In the event of a conflict between any information in this guide and the provisions in the SFOA, 2017 or its regulation, the SFOA, 2017 and regulation apply.

View the Guide for Retailers

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