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City of Burnaby did expand “smoking” ban in public spaces to include vaping

In the City of Burnaby’s smoking ban bylaw they have expanded their definition of smoking to include vaping. Burnaby smoking ban became effective on January 1, 2022, which restricts smoking cigarettes, tobacco, cannabis, e-cigarettes and vape products in public parks, city-owned or controlled outdoor public spaces, and some business premises.

While the smoking ban is across many areas of the city it doesn’t mean you can’t smoke at all. The City of Burnaby isn’t restricting your freedom to smoke or vape, they have only limited areas where possible as their way of “helping people quit” smoking.

Public Spaces that smoking and vaping is banned is followed:

  • Lands and facilities owned or leased by the City and intended for public or civic use, except for designated smoking areas.
  • All City parks and multi-use paths.
  • Bicycle lanes, boulevards, crosswalks, sidewalks, walkways, rights of way and other public spaces or passageways located next to a City park or commercial, institutional or assembly-use property. Assembly-use properties include such places as schools, places of worship, theatres or similar institutions.
  • Within six metres of any public transit facility, including transit stations, bus stops, shelters, benches, poles and signage.

While in the list it includes “crosswalks, sidewalks, walkways, rights of way” it may look confusing to some and sound like you can’t smoke anywhere in public.

BC Rise reached out to the city of Burnaby bylaw office clarify if “crosswalks, sidewalks, walkways, rights of way” only applies if it is abut to the public spaces listed

people are “permitted to smoke outdoors on sidewalks or alleys, provided those spaces are not directly adjacent to parks, commercial, institutional or assembly-use property.”

Smoking and vaping on business properties:

There is no smoking or vaping indoors at all but does include very few exemptions.

Business Premises:

  • Any enclosed or substantially enclosed area of a business premises that is a workplace or open to the public.
  • Partially enclosed or unenclosed customer service areas where food or beverages are served on-site (e.g. patios, balconies and terraces).

Exceptions are provided in the following cases:

  • Aboriginal ceremonial use or smoking of tobacco or other substances, with the prior permission of the City.
  • Smoking during a movie production, theatrical or other artistic performance, with the prior permission of the City.
  • Smoking of hookah, except tobacco and cannabis, in business premises that existed and had a valid business licence before the smoking bylaw was adopted (these businesses are listed in the bylaw).
  • Business within a residential dwelling that is not open to the public and only with worker(s) who live in the dwelling (e.g. self-employed home-based businesses) 
  • Hotel and motel rooms designated as smoking rooms.

The penalties for violating the smoking bylaw will range from $200-$500

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Jordan is a casual reporter for BC Rise


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