Meeting: 21/06/2021 - Cabinet (Item 60)
Report of Executive Member for People, Communications and Governance, Councillor Ian Sherwood.
The Executive Member for People & Governance, Councillor Ian Sherwood presented the report that asked Members to consider making the Council smoke-free and sought agreement for implementing a supporting policy to enable it to happen.
In the wake of the COVID19 pandemic, it was important to ensure that Members and staff were returning to a healthy and safe working environment, and in addition, new policies and ways of working were also being established as part of the Worksmart 2020 programme. Breckland Council prided itself on supporting the health and wellbeing of the staff and provided a range of assistance that would be enhanced by providing a smoke-free site at Elizabeth House.
The Executive Member was aware that NICE were due to consult on the 25 June on smoking cessation and would consider that if changes were made to the Policy in regard to vaping or e-cigarettes he would do this in consultation with the Head of Paid Service.
Councillor Birt noted that there had been a cost with the temporary removal of the smoking shelter and asked why it had been temporary. The Executive Member for People & Governance responded that if the policy was approved then the smoking shelter would be removed permanently.
Councillor Morton asked what provision would be in place for those that were addicted to smoking. Members were informed that those who wished to give up would receive the support they needed.
1) Do nothing.
2) Implement the Smoke-free policy, from June 2021.
Reasons for recommendation
To improve the wellbeing of our staff, bring consistency to our approach to staff breaks and have a more attractive council site.
RESOLVED that the Smoke-free Policy (as set out in Appendix A of the report) be implemented and the following recommendations approved:
1) To encourage and proactively support our staff to quit smoking with the support of Smokefree Norfolk, the NHS and other local support organisations.
2) To designate Elizabeth House - including its car park and outdoor areas - as a completely smoke-free site.
3) To ensure staff only take smoking breaks in their own time and away from Elizabeth House.
4) To permanently remove the smoking shelter at Elizabeth House and make the area an outdoor space for staff to use.
5) To include e-cigarettes and vaping in the list of prohibited activity in the Council's Smoke-free Policy.
6) To positively encourage adherence to the policy, but where necessary, enforce compliance through existing staff disciplinary procedures, or the code of conduct.