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City Considering Establishing Smoke Protections to benefit people who live, work and play in El Cerrito
El Cerrito Currently "Failing" to Provide Public Protection from Tobacco Smoke
no smoking symbol
Tobacco use causes death and disease and continues to be an urgent public health challenge.

In the American Lung Association’s 2013 State of Tobacco Control report for California, which assigns grades for local tobacco policies, the City of El Cerrito received a grade of “F”. 

In early 2013, during the discussion on strategies for fulfilling the Strategic Plan goal of Ensuring the Public’s Health and Safety, both the City Council and members of the public identified “Explore innovative and best practices for promoting public health”, specifically referencing the regulation of secondhand smoke, as an objective for the City.

Development of Proposed Smoke Protection Ordinance Underway 
Over the summer as part of the EC STARS internship program, intern Amel Alkaheli researched this topic and gathered information from other cities, Contra Costa County, and non-profit organizations including the American Cancer Society and American Lung Association. As part of her internship project, Amel developed a presentation on the potential provisions that could be included in a smoking restrictions ordinance for El Cerrito based on her research and the criteria from the American Lung Association report. This was presented at meetings of the Park and Recreation Commission and the Environmental Quality Committee in July and August, respectively. Both advisory bodies were receptive to such an ordinance and provided valuable feedback.

Following these meetings, City staff met to strategize gathering broad community feedback on the provisions that were presented to the advisory bodies as well as obtain input on the overall topic of smoking restrictions within the City of El Cerrito.

Staff is working in partnership with Denice Dennis, Project Manager of the Contra Costa County Tobacco Prevention Project, who is providing technical assistance to the city in its public information and implementation efforts.  
The input gathered from the community  will be used to develop a draft ordinance that will then be presented for community review and comments.

Following a public review period, an ordinance would then be presented to the City Council for their consideration in spring or early summer.
Get Involved!

Take a brief online survey.

Be sure to include your contact information at the end of the survey if you would like to be kept informed about future opportunities to comment on this issue.

Community Workshop
Save the date and plan to attend a Community Workshop on Smoke Protection:
Thursday, February 27, 2014
6:30 p.m. to 8:00 pm
El Cerrito City Hall – Council Chambers
10890 San Pablo Ave

Contact Staff

If you have any questions, suggestions, or input on secondhand smoke protection regulations, please contact Karen Pinkos, Assistant City Manager. 

Resources to Help You Quit Smoking
Visit the Contra Costa County Tobacco Prevention Project's Cessation Resources webpage to learn about resources available to help you or a loved one quit smoking.