Bad news for smokers in Buenos Aires: It looks like BA is following in the steps of New York.
City legislators from the PRO and the SUMA MAS – UNEN parties are currently pushing for two bills that seek to amend the Buenos Aires City’s Cigarette Consumption Law and ban smoking in parks, squares and other public spaces.
Two bills are currently being considered for debate in a Legislature committee. The first one, if passed, would ban smoking in all of the city’s parks and squares. The second bill says smokers must keep a distance of at least eight meters from areas designated for sports or children. These bills were introduced by former PRO legislators Helio Rebot and Ivan Petrella respectively back in 2013, and are now being pushed again for debate by legislators Victoria Roldan and Maria Ines Gorbea.
According to Perfil, eight out of ten porteños agree with a smoking ban in playgrounds and parks.
Anti-smoking legislation has brought great benefits to the population. According to the last national survey of risk factors in 2013, one out of four people in Argentina smokes, in comparison to ten years ago when one of every three Argentine population smoked. Higher taxes on cigarettes (from 60 to 75 percent) helped decrease this number, after 81 percent of smokers said they decided to buy less cigarettes due to the high prices.