Outdoor smoking ban idea doesn’t get far with Victoria councillors

Budgetary restraints among reasons given for rejection of Gudgeon's proposal

Tammy Carter and Lorn Nelson enjoy a smoke while relaxing in Centennial Square. City council rejected a proposal to ban smoking in the square as a pilot project for a wider ban on lighting up in outdoor places where people congregate.

An idea to ban smoking in Centennial Square didn’t find the support required to move forward.

Coun. Shellie Gudgeon put forward a motion to impose the ban on a six-month trial basis. She proposed extending the ban to all outdoor public spaces where people congregate, if the test ban were successful.

“It’s the right thing to do,” she said. “It’s encouraging people to quit, but it’s creating a healthy and welcoming environment.”

Council, however, didn’t support her motion.

“Given these times of fiscal restraint, we don’t need to add more things for the city staff to do … when we’re already looking for things to cut,” said Coun. Lisa Helps.

She also opposed the motion on social-justice grounds and the policing of poverty.

“I can already see it in my mind’s eye that someone who is living on the street or homeless or has nowhere else to have a cigarette … and the bylaw officer comes and moves them along for no other reason than they are smoking.”

Centennial Square, she said, “has to be a place for everyone.”

Until smoking was banned in Greater Victoria restaurants and bars around the turn of the century, Gudgeon was a heavy smoker. The change in legislation, she said, gave her the incentive she needed to quit.

While her idea for the ban didn’t make it past the committee stage, other local municipalities have taken steps to broaden their smoking bans in recent years.

North Saanich has prohibited smoking in parks and along trails. Sidney is also considering a ban on smoking in outdoor public spaces and is encouraging the Capital Regional District to do the same.

rholmen@vicnews.com

 

Just Posted

Rebels season over after loss in Cullen Cup Final

Westshore had won ten straight games prior to championship game

West Shore fireworks courses start next week

Course required for mandatory permit

More than 900 new units planned for Langford Lake development

Council still has to sign-off on rezoning application

Hey Amazon, the bid’s in the mail: Langford mayor

The City of Langford has officially submitted its bid to become the home of Amazon HQ2.

Art has become a lifestyle for local resident

Coast Collective’s latest exhibit celebrates all things late fall

Sooke fudge company on Dragon’s Den Nov. 2

Fudge in A Round appearance on Dragon’s Den celebrated with a viewing party at the local Legion Nov. 2

Human remains found at Silver Creek property

RCMP have been searching the property in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road for the past three days

EDITORIAL: It’s time to change the sexual assault conversation

The words “Me Too” are taking social media by storm this week,… Continue reading

Pumpkins’ versatility goes beyond Halloween

Linda Geggie For the Saanich News Get this. My 13-year-old just came… Continue reading

New B.C. acute care centre opens for young patients, expectant mothers

Facility aims to make B.C. Children’s Hospital visits more comfortable

Search ramps up for B.C. woman after dog, car found near Ashcroft

Jenny Lynn Larocque’s vehicle and dog were found in Venables Valley, but there is no sign of her

Event puts pets in the picture for Halloween

Pets West holding Halloween party Oct. 29 at its Broadmead Village location

Police officer hit by car, stabbed in Edmonton attack back on job

Const. Mike Chernyk, 48, returned to work Thursday

UBC medical students learn to care for Indigenous people

Students in health-related studies to take course, workshop to help better serve Aboriginal people

Most Read