A lawyer who described a smoking ban at health facilities in West Auckland and North Shore, in New Zealand, as cruel and torturous has told a court hospitals need dedicated smoking rooms, according to a story on Radio New Zealand.
Smoking has been banned on all Waitemata District Health Board sites since 2009.
Two former psychiatric patients and a retired nurse are challenging the ban in the DHB’s mental health units.
Their lawyer, Richard Francois, told the High Court in Auckland on Monday that some psychiatric patients are refusing care because they can’t smoke—which he says shows that the ban is cruel and nothing short of torture.
Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced that New York’s smoke-free areas will be expanded to state parks and historic sites, according to a report by Jess String for The Legislative Gazette.
The expansion will take effect in time for the 2013 peak summer season.
Violators will be liable to a fine of up to $250, plus surcharges if they fail to comply.
“Our state parks embody the rich, natural beauty that New York has to offer, and our residents should be able to enjoy them free of pollution for [sic] second hand smoke,” said Cuomo.
“Today’s announcement of the expansion of smoke-free zones in our state parks is an important step forward in ensuring New York’s families can enjoy our great outdoors smoke-free, in a healthy environment.”
String wrote that, according to the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation’s website, the smoke-free areas did not encompass the entirety of the parks, but were limited to swimming areas, beach areas, bathhouses, concessions, pavilions, shelters, playgrounds, picnic shelters and places where educational programs were conducted.
However, outdoor historic parks were almost completely smoke-free, as were all state parks in New York City.