To ensure the health and safety of all Ontario residents, enclosed workplaces and public places were legislated to be smoke-free as of May 31, 2006. The Brant County Health Unit wants to work with employers and their employees to help achieve and maintain smoke-free environments and thus eliminate the health risks associated with second hand smoke (SHS). Our workplace guide to Developing Smoking Policies was specifically designed for you - the manager, employer, union representative or concerned employee - who wants to reduce or eliminate smoking at work.
The average Canadian spends 2/3 of their waking hours in the workplace (Health Canada, 1999). In light of this fact, more and more employers are taking steps to help create healthy workplaces and supportive environments at work for their employees. Supportive environments that incorporate wellness activities promote healthy choices that make it easier for employees to practice healthy behaviours. Implementing a workplace smoking policy that addresses the new Smoke-Free Ontario Act and the responsibility of all Ontarians to keep workplaces smoke-free is one way to build a supportive environment. Smoking policies can help to limit employee's exposure to second-hand smoke, which in turn reduces the incidence of lung cancer, heart disease and respiratory problems. Having a smoke-free workplace can also help to lower the costs of health care insurance premiums as well as decrease the amount of time employees invest in smoking.
Here are a few more reasons to implement a workplace smoking policy:
Health Canada has recently released a new resource on smoke-free workplace policy. Towards a Healthier Workplace: A Guidebook on Tobacco Control Policies is available online at http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hc-ps/pubs/tobac-tabac/work-trav/index-eng.php or call the Brant County Health Unit for a copy.
The Tobacco Use Prevention Team at the Brant County Health Unit is available to help you with the development of your policy to meets the needs of your organization. Staff can also provide you with resources and advice as you work through this process. For more information, or to set up an appointment with a Tobacco Use Prevention Team Member call 753-4937 ext. 455.
|Last Updated ( Tuesday, 14 July 2009 )|