The Non-Smokers’ Rights Association/Smoking and Health Action Foundation developed and maintains a searchable database of smoke-free laws across Canada, with funding from the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term Care. The database identifies bylaws and laws that exceed one or more provisions of the Smoke-Free Ontario Act (SFOA) related to second-hand smoke or e-cigarettes.

It generally does not cover provisions regarding other tobacco control issues such as flavoured tobacco products or advertising and promotion.

Last full update:  March 31, 2016

Note about Smoke-Free Ontario Act (SFOA)

On January 1, 2015 several amendments to the Smoke-Free Ontario Act (SFOA) came into effect. Since all patios, playgrounds and sports fields in the province are smoke-free, we no longer track municipal bylaws related to these spaces.

However, for a historical perspective, we have kept legislation passed by December 31, 2014 that prohibits smoking in these three places.

To determine if legislation exceeds the SFOA, please use the searchable field.

If you notice any errors or omissions, please contact us.

“Leading Edge” Standards for Smoke-Free Laws and Bylaws

You may notice that some of the entries in the database are listed as being “leading edge.” What exactly does “leading edge” mean?

For the purposes of this database, we wanted a way to draw attention to laws and bylaws with novel elements. Since there is no consensus on what “best practices” are or what “gold standard” means, we gathered together a group of our public health partners to discuss what elements would constitute “leading edge.”

Based on those discussions and other input, we came up with a list of outdoor spaces where, by prohibiting smoking there, a municipality / province / territory is leading the way for the rest of the country. A bylaw or law can also be considered leading edge by prohibiting use of one of the devices or substances listed, whether indoors or outdoors, e.g., waterpipes.

We acknowledge that “leading edge” is a moving target. As social policy continues to evolve across Canada, “leading edge” status of laws and bylaws will be re-evaluated.