The Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products Act has taken another important step forward today with a key new requirement taking effect.
On 11 November 2020, changes under the Act saw the existing prohibition on smoking at schools, kura kaupapa, kôhanga reo and early childhood facilities extended to include vaping. This means these places must be smoke free and vape free, indoors and out, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Following on from this, from today, ‘no vaping’ signage must be displayed at these locations in addition to the existing requirement to display ‘no smoking’ notices. Schools are also required to take all reasonably practicable steps to ensure that no person smokes or vapes in any part of their school, whether inside or outside, at any time of the day.
“One of the key intents of the Act – and a key commitment of our Government – is to protect our tamariki, young people and non-smokers from the risks associated with these products,” says Deputy Director of Public Health Dr Harriette Carr.
“Over the coming months, we will continue to phase in important changes – like this introduction of the ‘no smoking’ and ‘no vaping’ signage – to prioritise the wellbeing of New Zealanders. As leaders in our communities, schools have a particularly important role to play. Their mahi and efforts – from displaying the right signage to ensuring students, staff, visitors, parents and whânau are aware of the no smoking and vaping policies and rules – will contribute to positive health outcomes for our current and future generations.”