No ifs, whens or butts about smoking

Cat Ranieri and Jeromy Zwick spread the smoke free zone message in Murray Street Mall. Picture: Marcus Whisson www.communitypix.com.au d420282
Cat Ranieri and Jeromy Zwick spread the smoke free zone message in Murray Street Mall. Picture: Marcus Whisson www.communitypix.com.au d420282

As of June 1, City of Perth rangers will enforce $100 fines if people are found smoking in Hay and Murray Street malls, as well as Forrest Place.

Smokers have been given warnings if found lighting up during the past six months since the smoking ban was introduced, with ‘no-smoking police’ patrolling the areas on stilts.

Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi said initially about 45 people per day on average were warned about smoking, which had since dropped to about 20. Ms Scaffidi said fines would be issued as a last resort for people who refused to butt out.

‘The intention of the ban is not to target smokers in terms of revenue raising; it’s about encouraging behaviour change for the better health and wellbeing of all residents, workers and visitors to our city,’ she said.

‘Issuing fines is always going to be a last resort.

‘Everyone, homeless or otherwise, who is approached by our rangers will be given fair warning to butt out and bin their butt and given every opportunity to avoid being issued even an official caution.’

Ms Scaffidi said smokers could face an additional $500 fine for littering if they did not put their butts in the bin. Police will be called if smokers are non-compliant or cannot provide details required to issue a fine.