October 23 2014 Latest news:
Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Smoking could be banned on council premises with employees restricted to three smoking breaks a day.
A smoke free environment policy for Cambridgeshire County Council was approved by Cabinet on March 4 and will be debated by full council next Tuesday.
Under the policy, employees will not be able to smoke anywhere on county council premises, take more than three smoking breaks a day or smoke while away from the office on council business.
They will not be allowed to use e-cigarettes on council sites or in work time if off-site because “current evidence on their safety and effectiveness is insufficient to support their use”.
A report from Dr Liz Robin, the director of public health, said: “The council recognises that employees who are smokers may find it difficult to stop smoking, or that they may not want to stop.
“However, the council requires that smokers will control and limit their smoking to before/after work and/or during unpaid meal breaks, away from council premises and sites, and not visibly in uniform.
“The provision of smoke free environments is a clear message that health improvement is a key aim of the council.
“While the council delivers the message that smoking, both active and passive, is harmful to health and should be discouraged, this smoke free environment policy is not about whether people smoke, it’s about where and when they do it.”
The rules will apply to any individual on the council site, including in the car parks.
Employees will be expected to change out of or cover their uniform before taking a smoking break irrespective of whether they are off duty or off council premises.
Disciplinary procedures will take place against employees who deliberately or persistently break the rules.
Fellow workers will be encouraged to use the council’s Whistleblowing Policy to report colleagues who ignore the policy.