You can plan to make your workplace smoke and vape-free this year.
- In 2012, daily smokers cost employers on average $4,256. This is up from $3,396 per year in 2005.
- For every dollar invested in tobacco prevention programming, up to $20 is saved in future health care costs.
- Smoke and vape-free workplace policies protect all employees and visitors from the harms of second-hand smoke exposure and, support reduced smoking and quitting. The Smoke Free Ontario Act, 2017 (SFOA, 2017) prohibits smoking in enclosed workplaces. For example, enclosed buildings, structures or vehicles. However, the Act does not extend to outdoor workplaces.
To protect our employees, volunteers, contractors and visitors from second-hand smoke exposure and to create a supportive environment for those who want to quit smoking, we amended our corporate Smoking in the Workplace policy to provide smoke-free grounds at Regional worksites.
Create your plan
The following action plans can be used to create your tobacco plan for your organization.
Create buy-in and support for a smoke and vape-free workplace among management and employees by creating a business case highlighting the benefits of a smoke and vape-free workplace.
- Create a health and wellness committee to plan and implement activities that meet the needs and interests of staff.
- Establish a systematic approach to address organizational health and wellbeing. Incorporate health and wellbeing into policies and communications as appropriate.
- Participate in a healthy workplace certification program such as Fitwel or WELL Building Standard.
Be a role model employer for healthy living by not engaging in smoking and vaping behaviour.
- Abide by the SFOA, 2017 and support implemented smoke and vape-free workplace interventions.
- Develop smoke and vape-free workplace policies and initiatives. For example, a 100% smoke and vape-free grounds policy.
Develop a smoke and vape-free corporate policy for your workplace.
- Partial ban: no smoking or vaping 9 metres from all entrances, operable windows and building intakes.
- Complete ban: 100% smoke and vape-free property. No smoking or vaping on all workplace grounds, including workplace vehicles.
- Promote the new policy prior to implementation using a communication strategy.
- As an employer, cover the full or partial cost of stop smoking services available to employees prior to and during the initial roll out of the policy.
- Do not allow tobacco and vape products to be sold in the building of your work location.
- Post the required SFOA, 2017 signage where applicable. Contact the Region of Peel to request free Smoke-Free Ontario or Region of Peel smoking by-law signage (if applicable).
- You can create your own no smoking and no vaping signage if your workplace has developed its own policy. This applies if your organization's policy is more stringent than the SFOA, 2017, or the legislation does not apply.
- Place signage in all areas that are designated to be smoke and vape-free by the employer.
- Visit our Tobacco, Cannabis and Electronic Cigarette Enforcement page.
Encourage employees to access available tools to help stop smoking and supports.
Allow employees to access available stop smoking programs and support without a loss of pay during work hours.
Promote low-cost or free services to stop smoking to employees such as the Smokers' Helpline.
Provide and enhance employee benefit plan to cover the cost of supports to stop smoking and nicotine replacement therapies like gum, patches, and inhalers.
- A smoke and vape-free employee contract prevents employees from smoking and vaping during work hours and when identifiable as an employee.
- Develop a smoke and vape-free employee contract that is personalized to your workplace.
- Encourage all current and new employees to sign and follow the contract.
- Enforce the contract by developing an enforcement policy. Ensure consequences for not following it are outlined to employees in advance.
- Visit our Tobacco and Smoking page for more information on stop smoking resources.
- Call Peel Public Health at 905-799-7700 to learn how to create a smoke and vape-free workplace.
- Making the Business Case for Smoke-Free Workplaces (PDF).
- The Program Training and Consultation Centre has workplace resources to support the development, implementation and evaluation of workplace stop smoking programs.