Will Canada’s smoking section be forced to butt out?

01.12.05

According to the Health Minister, a provincial smoking ban in all public places may be implemented sooner than we might think:

“The writing’s on the wall,” Couillard said. “We’re going toward smoke-free restaurants, bars and other types of institutions.

[ . . . ]

Couillard plans to table legislation in the National Assembly this spring after hearing from the various interested parties. He said the plan is to have the new law ready for implementation by fall 2005 or January 2006 at the latest.

As a non-smoker, I look forward to the days when I can breathe freely. And my usual arguments against nanny-state interference don’t really apply here, because smokers aren’t only hurting themselves, they’re hurting those around them.

But I’m not sure how well this is going to go over here in Quebec, traditionally known as Canada’s ashtray. The bar owners are sure to mount a protest, rather than risk losing their beer-and-cigarette crowd. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out.

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