Shang­hai wel­comes new smok­ing ban

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - By CHI­NADAILY in Shang­hai

The World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion and some mem­bers of the pub­lic said they wel­come the ex­tended smok­ing ban in Shang­hai, which is aimed at shield­ing res­i­dents from sec­ond­hand smoke.

The newreg­u­la­tion pro­hibit­ing smok­ing at all pub­lic in­door venues and in­door work­ing ar­eas was­re­centlyap­proved­bythe city’s leg­isla­tive body, the Shang­hai Mu­nic­i­pal Peo­ple’s Congress, and will take ef­fect in­March next year.

Other lo­ca­tions in­cluded in the ex­tended smok­ing ban are a greater num­ber of out­door places, such as artis­tic per­for­mance and sports venues, open ar­eas at ma­ter­nity and in­fant hos­pi­tals and the bus stops.

The reg­u­la­tion was passed 10 days be­fore the 9th Global Con­fer­ence on Health Pro­mo­tion, which is to be held in Shang­hai from Mon­day to Thurs­day this week, fo­cus­ing on pro­mot­ing pub­lic health.

“We are de­lighted that, with the adop­tion of this new law, Shang­hai will be pro­tect­ing non­smok­ers from the health risks of in­hal­ing sec­ond­hand smoke,” said Bern­hard Schwart­lander, World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion rep­re­sen­ta­tive in China.

“When this newlaw­comes into force in­March next year, the peo­ple of Shang­hai will be able to breathe smoke-free air in­doors. This is a huge step for­ward for the health of Shang­hai’smorethan 20 mil­lion res­i­dents. Deaths caused by in­vol­un­tary ex­po­sure to sec­ond­hand smoke are en­tirely pre­ventable, and­froma pub­lic health per­spec­tive, such deaths are sim­ply un­ac­cept­able,” he added.

“By fully im­ple­ment­ing and en­forc­ing the com­pre­hen­sive in­door smok­ing ban with­out ex­cep­tions, Shang­hai will once again be able to po­si­tion it­self as a leader in con­trol­ling smok­ing in the Healthy City move­ment in China,” he said.

The city’s first reg­u­la­tion to con­trol smok­ing took ef­fect in 2010, while smok­ing is al­lowed in des­ig­nated ar­eas at restau­rants, en­ter­tain­ment venues, rail­way sta­tions and air­ports. But ex­perts in­sist that the air around these des­ig­nated venues still con­tains high lev­els of PM2.5, which is pro­duced by smok­ing and can cause can­cer.

Un­der the new reg­u­la­tion, smok­ing is banned in out­door pub­lic spa­ces at kinder­gartens, pri­mary and sec­ondary schools, wel­fare houses and other venues where mi­nors are gath­ered.

The ban will also be ef­fec­tive in out­door ar­eas when cul­tural relics are dis­played to the pub­lic, and other reg­u­lated sites.

In­di­vid­u­als caught smok­ing at these ar­eas will be fined be­tween 50 and 200 yuan ($7 to $29) and or­ga­ni­za­tions that fail to stop smok­ers will be fined up to 30,000 yuan.

Man­age­ment of pub­lic ar­eas is re­quired to or­ga­nize spe­cial staff or vol­un­teers to stop peo­ple from smok­ing, ed­u­cate peo­ple about the smok­ing ban and re­port vi­o­la­tions to reg­u­la­tors.

Mem­bers of the pub­lic said they look for­ward to the city’s con­tin­u­ous ef­forts to fully im­ple­ment and en­force the smok­ing ban with­out ex­cep­tions.

“It is im­por­tant that our gov­ern­ment is tak­ing rigid ac­tion,” said Zhu Yifei, a 33-year-old non­smoker. Spe­cial per­son­nel should be de­ployed to fight smok­ing in the same way il­le­gal park­ing is dealt with, she added.

Liu Demin, a smoker, said: “I sel­dom smoke in­doors. I might be too lazy to go out to smoke un­der tighter laws.”

He also sug­gested in­creas­ing the amount of pub­lic­ity sur­round­ing the new reg­u­la­tion, “or peo­ple will have no idea that they have vi­o­lated it”. Fang Aiqing con­trib­uted to this story.

Fine for in­di­vid­u­als caught smok­ing in banned ar­eas

2010 ’ ’ ’ ’ ’ ’ ’ ’ ’ ’ ’

79.8 Life ex­pectancy Ma­ter­nal mor­tal­ity Neona­tal mor­tal­ity Sex ra­tio at birth: males to fe­males Ra­tio of health ex­pen­di­ture to GDP 76.34 201 6.3 113.51 Med­i­cal in­surance among the un­em­ployed Three goals to be achieved by 2030 98.9 Three pil­lars of health pro­mo­tion Tips for health Health pro­mo­tion con­fer­ences

GAO ERQIANG / CHINA DAILY

Peo­ple smoke at an out­door des­ig­nated smok­ing area on Dong­fang Road in Shang­hai in Septem­ber. The city will ex­tend its pub­lic smok­ing ban to more out­door ar­eas un­der a new reg­u­la­tion start­ing in March.

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