Update to smoking, vaping and cannabis laws

Press Release

Iqaluit, Nunavut (May 23, 2023) – Effective May 31, 2023, the Department of Health’s updated smoking laws go into effect. The laws are designed to protect Nunavummiut from the harms of smoking and environmental smoke with a strong emphasis on pregnant women, children and youth.

The Tobacco and Smoking Act (TSA) includes regulations on smoking, vaping, and cannabis use in public spaces. Smoking is prohibited in the following areas:

  • Public housing and Government of Nunavut staff housing units.
  • In or on motor vehicles while a minor is present.
  • Hospital, school, bus stops, or child care facility grounds.
  • Sports and playing fields, including spectator stands.
  • Parades, concerts, and public events.
  • Sidewalks and pedestrian walkways, trails and paths.

The TSA also includes regulations for selling flavoured tobacco and vapour products.

To better protect our most vulnerable populations and creating healthy workplaces, the law establishes smoke-free zones around schools, health facilities, daycares, recreational facilities, public events, and workplaces, prohibiting smoking within nine metres of the entrance. Smoking is also prohibited within five meters of patio areas of a restaurant or bar, or anywhere where food or drinks are served or consumed.

“These new laws acknowledge the negative health impacts from tobacco and cannabis products,” said Minister of Health John Main. “We can all do our part by following these laws and making sure others are, too. Working together, we can protect Nunavummiut from second-hand harms of tobacco and cannabis use.”

As the Worker’s Safety and Compensation Commission (WSCC) is responsible for workplace health and safety, if you wish to report a violation of these laws at your workplace, contact WSCC (877-404-4407).

For violations at storefronts, please contact the proprietor, as it is their responsibility to ensure that employees and patrons are complying with these laws.

All other questions, queries or complaints can be directed to tobacco@gov.nu.ca.

For more information, visit nuquits.ca.


Media Contact:

Danarae Sommerville
A/ Manager of Communications
Department of Health


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