Government plans to ban smoking from parks and beaches
Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has announced plans to ban smoking from beaches and parks.
Government is considering introducing by-laws in a bid to stop people from smoking in these areas.
Department of Health's Tobacco-Free Ireland announced the plans in their latest report.
The ban will protect children from passive smoking.
The government also hopes it will encourage the public to make healthier lifestyle changes.
Smoking will be banned in parks and beaches "in conjunction with local authorities by voluntary measures or by the introduction of by-laws”.
The team's aim is to denormalise smoking. They also hope to protect children from the side effects of smoking, as well as passive smoking.
Tobacco Free Ireland also confirmed plans for Ireland to be tobacco-free by 2025.
Minister Donnelly has encouraged people to quit smoking for the sake of their health.
He stated, “Stopping smoking remains one of the best decisions a person can make for their health and the HSE Quit service is available to anyone who needs support to take that first step.”
Parents have praised the plans by Tobacco Free Ireland.
Many have been concerned about the impact passive smoking will have on their children's health. Others also hope fewer children will be exposed to smoking once the ban is approved.
This ban will hopefully discourage them from taking up the habit.
The ban comes after a rise in smoking rates since the Covid-19 pandemic.
24% of people aged between 45 and 54 smoke, but are also smoking more than before.
A further 28% of smokers admitted they smoked more cigarettes after the pandemic.