My dad was a big smoker. We took long trips in the car, second-hand smoke swirling around our heads. Later on, as we grew older (and our complaints grew louder), he would open the window a crack so the smell wouldn’t be so bad. Those long winter days also meant that he would smoke in our house. That the smell of smoke ever came out of my hair is a wonder. Fast forward in time and a lot has changed. Offices, stores and cafes are all smoke free. BC schools are always tobacco-free - not just when school is in session. Smoky car trips with my dad would be a thing of the past - it's illegal to smoke in your car when someone under 16 is in it. We also know a lot more - we have proof that second-hand smoke is harmful - especially for kids, who can be exposed to the same amount of smoke as adults but who have smaller, still-developing bodies. Our home can be our castle and as parents, we want our children to be as healthy as possible - but it's hard if a family member is a smoker.
Looking to create a smoke-free home? Here are some ideas:
- Start talking - let people know you’d like to make your home smoke-free
- Think about how you would handle some situations - for example, a grandmother who has always smoked at your house or a friend who has a cigarette with coffee after supper
- Take action - move your ashtrays outside; post a sign on your door
- Health Canada offers a seven step plan with some great ideas
Is your home smoke-free? Tell us how you did it.