Not if you are on any government grounds or parks. You must go off of the property.
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Dangers of secondhand smoke and secondhand aerosol:
Health risks of secondhand smoke outdoors:
A cleaner environment:
The DHHS Board desires to reduce the harmful effects of smoking as well as eliminate the exposure to secondhand smoke for its citizens and any visitors. Policies or ordinances that prohibit where you can use tobacco products help those who are thinking of quitting to successfully quit the use of tobacco products. Tobacco-free or smoke-free policies help to protect others from the exposure to secondhand smoke as well as provide tobacco-free role modeling for our youth.
If you or someone you know is thinking about quitting, there is support. Smokers can talk to their healthcare providers about quitting and review the cessation options that are available through their health insurance. They can also take advantage of the free quitting support service, QuitlineNC at 800-784-8669 (800-QUIT-NOW ) or go to the QuitlineNC website.
We are not saying that people who are over 18 cannot smoke or use tobacco products. We are simply saying that they cannot do it in government buildings, grounds or parks as well as indoor public places (an enclosed area to which the public is invited or permitted).
Many laws and ordinances restrict behavior that was formerly legal: smoke-free bars and restaurants, seat belt laws, impaired driving laws. All of these have been proven to greatly and effectively protect public health.
Electronic cigarettes, vaping devices, and most e-hookahs contain cartridges with liquid nicotine. Nicotine is derived from real tobacco, because of this, the state of North Carolina considers e-cigs a tobacco product. E-cigarettes, vaping devices, e-hookahs or any electronic oral device that employ a mechanical heating element are included in this ordinance.
This is not just about exposure to secondhand smoke (which can occur outside if close enough to the smoke - if you smell it, you are being exposed), it is about role modeling a tobacco-free norm to our youth. 90% of adults started using tobacco before age 18. To reduce tobacco's toll on our community, we must influence kids not to start. When they experiment, they can become addicted to nicotine, setting them up for potentially serious health problems and other substance use disorders.
The best way to enhance enforcement is to inform the public of the new policy by providing adequate signage, public education and communication. Over time, it will become the norm for people to not smoke or use tobacco products in these particular places.
For the public who fail to cease using tobacco products can be punished by a fine of no more than $50. A citation may be issued by a sworn law enforcement officer (no court costs may be assessed). For business owners of public places who fail to comply after two written warning violations from a local health director may have imposed upon them an administrative penalty of not more than $200. Each day on which a violation occurs may be considered a separate and distinct violation.