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Broome County To Make Playground Areas In Parks Tobacco Free

Armen Hareyan's picture

Tobacco Free Playground Areas

The Broome County Health Department to promote a new initiative to make playground areas in parks throughout Broome County tobacco free zones.

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The initiative, Young Lungs at Play, was developed to minimize children's exposure to secondhand smoke while playing at public parks.

"Secondhand smoke is a proven health risk, and we must do everything we can to keep it away from our children," said Barbara Fiala, Broome County Executive. "This new initiative will help us protect our children from the adverse effects cigarette smoke can have on their heart and respiratory systems."

Last night the Broome County Legislature passed a resolution to have all playground areas in Broome County parks tobacco free. This legislation will enhance the quality of life for children who use these playgrounds. Binghamton's Mayor Matthew T. Ryan is also showing support for this initiative. Those spearheading the initiative are hopeful that all other municipalities will follow Broome County's lead and develop similar tobacco free zones for their playgrounds. These zones will need to include plans for enforcement of the tobacco free areas, and education for park employees and the community at large about the new tobacco free zones. Municipalities that adopt these tobacco free zones in park playground areas will receive weather resistant signs to mark the tobacco free zones along with educational materials and assistance in conducting community education events.

"Young Lungs at Play is a common sense initiative," said Broome County Public Health Director Claudia Edwards. "Children should be able to have fun playing without inhaling secondhand smoke that we know is harmful."