Status: / Implemented 1st June 2006
Revised August 2009
Background Information 3
The Policy and Regulations 4
Residential establishments 5
Third party premises 6
Implementation and enforcement 6
Access: If you require this information in an alternative format such
as large type, audio cassette or Braille, please contact the HR
Employment Policy and Support 01609 536028
In 2007,smoking became prohibited in all public places in England and the
new law has been successfully implemented. The general public has
welcomed smoke free public places as an environmental enhancement and
North Yorkshire County Council fully support these developments.
1.0 North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) is committed to an effective
approach to safeguarding the health and well being of all employees
and others involved with the delivery of Council services. To this end
Recognises its duty to provide safe and healthy working conditions
and service delivery environments, by prohibiting smoking in all its
workplaces, enclosed and substantially enclosed spaces and
Employees are asked to not smoke while in NYCC grounds
Recognises the significant evidence detailing the harmful effect on
health of smoking including passive smoking
2. 0 The aim of this policy is to:
Inform employees and managers of their responsibilities in respect
of the policy, and
Inform employee of the Health Act, 2006 which prohibits smoking in
public and substantially enclosed public places/premises
Protect the health of employees, service users, Elected Members,
and others visiting and using North Yorkshire County Council
premises and services by applying and enforcing the law
Support smokers and provide stop-smoking information where
Support customers and visitors in complying with both the Policy
and the legislation.
3.0 This policy applies to all employees of North Yorkshire County Council.
School Head teachers and Governing Bodies should adopt this policy
or a similar one for all school premises to be legally compliant.
the In addition, the Health Act, 2006 that prohibits smoking in all public places and
substantially enclosed public places sets out a number of offences related to breaches of
the regulations. The County Council therefore, has a duty to ensure that elected
members, visitors, service users, contractors and agency workers who enter the
Council's owned or rented premises or vehicles are made aware of the smoke-free
regulations in order to comply with them. Employee breaches will be treated as matter of
Definitions of enclosed or substantially enclosed public places
The Department of Health have prepared an easy to use guidance
document ‘Everything you need to Prepare for the New Smoke free Law
from 1st July 2007’ that includes definitions and examples of enclosed and
substantially enclosed public places. The guidance also includes FAQS and
can be found at http://www.smokefreeengland.co.uk
The Law and Regulations
4.0 The Health Act, 2006, provides five sets of smoke free regulations
effective from 1st July, 2007 to which North Yorkshire County Council
as an employer, service provider and building and premises
owner/user must comply:
The Smoke-free (Premises and Enforcement) Regulations
The Smoke-free (Signs) Regulations
The Smoke-free (Exemptions and Vehicles) Regulations
The Smoke-free (Penalties and Discounted Amounts) Regulations
The Smoke-free (Vehicle Operators and Penalty Notices)
No-smoking signs in smoke free premises
4.1 The Health Act, 2006 places a legal duty on persons who occupy or
manage smoke-free premises to display no-smoking signs that meet
requirements set out in the regulations. Under the Health Act it will be
against the law not to display the required no-smoking signs (from 1st
July 2007). An easy to use guidance document is available from the
Department of Health website http://www.smokefreeengland.co.uk
(‘Everything you need to Prepare for the New Smoke Free Law on 1 st
4.2 Therefore, as part of their duties, officers responsible for
buildings and managers responsible for sections, areas or units
will be expected to make sure that no-smoking signs are
displayed. Details of how to obtain posters are given below.
DETAILS OF HOW TO OBTAIN SIGNS/POSTERS
The minimum size for no smoking signs is A5 and 70mms for the no-smoking
1. The County Hall Print Unit will provide both building and vehicle signs and
direct orders can placed by calling 01609 532904
2. No smoking signs can be ordered up to maximum quantities of 50 per order
from the Smokefreeengland.co.uk website, or email
firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 0800 169 1697. These are free
4.3 Legal enforcement
Where breaches take place the Health Act, 2006 provides the following
which applies to employees, managers, Elected Members, clients, contractors
and any other person on NYCC premises in the smoke-free areas:
The offence of smoking in a smoke-free place will be a summary
conviction and fine up to £200 or a fixed penalty notice of £50
Where an employer fails to display no-smoking signs they may
receive a summary conviction and a fine of up to £1,000 or a fixed
notice penalty of £200
The offence of failing to prevent smoking in a smoke-free place will
be a summary conviction and fine up to £2,500
The policy and regulations
5.0 In addition to section 4.0-4.3, the following will apply and any breach of
the regulations by employees will be treated as a conduct issue:
Employees are asked not to smoke while in NYCC grounds
Smoking is prohibited in all NYCC owned /rented/ controlled
buildings, and all enclosed or substantially enclosed public places. (
Refer to Residential Establishments for exceptions (6.0))
Smoking is prohibited in NYCC owned and hired vehicles including
pool cars and any vehicle used for NYCC business as a public
Where staff are paid an allowance and transport staff, other
personnel, clients other passengers smoking in the vehicle will be
Where staff use lease cars the above will apply
Staff will not take smoking breaks or clock out using the flexi-scheme
during the working day in order to take smoke breaks
Managers will not allow staff to take smoking breaks or to clock out
during the working day in order to take smoke breaks
Staff who do smoke are prohibited from smoking in or near NYCC
doorways, entrances and exits to NYCC owned and controlled
buildings. Instead staff who smoke are urged to smoke elsewhere
and preferably not on County Council premises or grounds.
Where a building is shared, North Yorkshire County Council will
request that the policy is adopted by other organisations and that the
policy is applied to communal areas.
The policy applies to all NYCC employees whether employed directly
by the Council or seconded to other organisations. The Policy also
applies to staff employed through an agency, by a contractor or by
Electronic Cigarettes – For the purposes of this policy, the use of
electronic cigarettes is to be regarded in the same way as tobacco
cigarettes (i.e. they are not permitted to be used in any work related
setting). This is because they may be unsettling to other employees –
particularly those who are trying to give up smoking or have recently
done so – and their use may be misinterpreted and/or cause alarm.
Staff should also be considerate of the local communities in which they
work and not drop cigarette ends off site when they are smoking during their
It is an offence under section 87 of the Environmental Protection Act, 1990 to
throw or drop litter. Local Authority Wardens have the power to issue penalty
notices to anyone caught littering and this can result in a fine of £2,500. The
Police and private individuals can also bring prosecution.
6.0 NYCC recognises that residential establishments are residents'
homes. But, they are also workplaces and the Council has a duty of
care to employees and a responsibility not to place them in situations
that could risk damage to health.
6.1 Residential services managers will carry out health and safety risk
assessments to explore options to minimise risk to employees, service
users and others visiting the establishment and will identify local
solutions that balance needs and responsibilities. These risk
assessments will require Director Approval.
6.2 Should a designated smoke-room be necessary in a residential home for
the use of clients then it must be kept clean and adequately ventilated.
Contaminated air must not enter the rest of the building
6.3 Smoking by residents is not permitted within Council premises, by
entrances or exits to buildings, or within enclosed or substantially
enclosed areas or where they are in view of the public, except in an
approved designated room as above. A list of approved smoke-rooms
will be maintained by the relevant Service Directorate.
6.4 Employees’ exposure to the exempted area outlined above should be
kept to an absolute minimum. Employees should seek advice from their
line manager who should take all reasonable steps to protect them from
exposure to second hand smoke.
6.5 Day Service facilities will apply a similar approach.
Note: Designated smoking rooms in other establishments (including schools)
are not permitted under the Health Act or this Policy.
Third party premises
7.0 Employees required to visit other premises as part of their duties, both
commercial and domestic – including a service user’s home, should
advise the occupant when arranging a visit of NYCC’s Smoke-free
However, while the Council has a duty of care to protect its employees it
cannot exert prohibitions in private dwellings. Employees should where
possible, request that the occupant arrange for a non-smoking area to
be provided for the duration of the visit.
7.1 Where service users or other occupants do not respect this request and
a solution cannot be agreed at that point the employee might, for this
reason only, suspend the visit. However, prior to taking this action they
should seek the advice and assistance of their line manager.
Where the service is provided regularly, an arrangement with the service
user should be agreed where at all possible for future and planned visits.
7.2 If an employee identifies that they have a pre-existing health problem,
which is made worse by exposure to smoke they should discuss this with
their manager to make alternative arrangements where possible.
Implementation and enforcement of the policy
8.0 Each Corporate Director will be responsible for the promotion and
maintenance of this ‘Smoke-free Workplace’ Policy. Guidance regarding
responsibilities in relation to the policy and enforcement is available from
the People Matters website in the Managers Information folder.
8.1 The Council recognises that smoking is an addiction and aims to provide
a supportive environment for those wishing to overcome it. Employees
will therefore be permitted up to four hours paid time leave to access
Smoking Cessation support with the NHS Stop Smoking Service, as a
one-off provision and would then use their own time.
8.2 Visitors not adhering to the Policy will be asked to comply or leave the
premises/grounds as they will be committing an offence for which they
and the County Council will be liable.
8.3 The policy will form part of new employees’ induction packs. Training
and guidance to enforce the policy will form part of new manager’s
8.4 Line managers, the Health and Well Being Service, Health and Safety
and HR Services will promote the smoking cessation support services
8.6 If members of staff continue to smoke on NYCC premises during work
time, or are observed littering areas on or off site complaints should be
made to the Service Manager or Head of Service in which they work.
Review of the policy
The Policy will be reviewed by North Yorkshire County Council’s Corporate
Risk Management Group twelve months after the date of