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Council launches survey to consider introducing smoke free playgrounds

With over a quarter of a million people taking part in the 28 day Stoptober challenge, Harrogate Borough Council has launched a public consultation to gauge opinion on whether its outdoor children’s play areas should be designated smoke-free zones.

Harrogate Borough Council manages 59 outdoor children’s play areas across the region. Currently there are no rules laid out for the restriction of smoking in these areas.

Following a number of concerns raised by parents, the council is asking residents for their opinions on the introduction of measures to discourage smoking within the vicinity of children’s play areas.

Councillor Phil Ireland, Cabinet Member for the Environment, Transport and External Affairs said: An increasing number of local authorities around the country are introducing smoke-free playgrounds as a means of reducing a child’s exposure to smoking. Currently there is no legislation to enforce a smoking ban at these locations, however in light of recent approaches from concerned parents and the growing local social media interest in the subject, we would welcome resident’s views on whether to introduce smoke free measures in the council’s playgrounds.

It is important that anyone with feelings on this issue contributes as the outcome of this survey will help us decide which course of action to take across the whole district. If you wish to see smoking discouraged within the council’s outdoor play areas, or if you are in favour of it continuing to be allowed, then we would like to hear from you.

The Smoke Free Playgrounds consultation is available to complete on the council’s website at:

Hard copies are available from the council’s Crescent Gardens offices in Harrogate and Ripon Town Hall. For further information or to request a hard copy please call 01423 500600. The closing date for responses is 4pm on Friday 14 November 2014.

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