Politics
4:35 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Louisville Metro Government to Thank You For Not Smoking in City Parks

Louisville Metro government this week is taking steps to discourage smoking at city park playgrounds and swimming pools.

City officials will unveil signs Thursday thanking adults for not smoking in certain areas of the park where children frequently use.

Tyler Park
Credit Wikimedia Commons

"Basically we’re just trying to remind the adults that will be in that area to keep the children from being exposed to second-hand smoke," Metro Parks Director Mike Heitz told WFPL.

"That’s the main thing, and by having the signs there they’ll be thoughtful of reminding them of that possibility."

The effort is spearheaded by the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness, as well as Metro Parks.

Since 2008 the city has banned smoking in public buildings and workplaces except for manufacturers that research and develop tobacco products. Louisville's ordinance does not forbid smoking outdoors, but the health and park officials are putting up signs at 20 different locations that state "Children at play—thank you for not smoking."

The city had considered extending an outdoor smoking ban for playground, spray grounds, and swimming pools and had sent out surveys to gauge community sentiment. About 80 percent of respondents supported making children's play areas smoke-free, health officials said.

Heitz said the joint effort between the parks and health departments won't carry the force of law, but is intended to protect Louisville's youngest residents.

"This is not an ordinance. It is not enforceable. It’s just a reminder that if you’re smoking in theses areas around children they could be exposed to second-hand smoke. It’s just that simple and we’re just asking people to refrain," he said.

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