China Bans Public Smoking in Beijing

China might be home to a startlingly large population of smokers, with more than a third of the world’s population of smokers residing there, but it seems that the government is stepping up its effort to crack down on smoking in public places. The capitol city has updated its restrictions on smoking in public areas. While similar resolutions were passed–and largely ignored–in 1996 and 2008, the new program takes the ban on public smoking to a new level. The fine associated with public smoking has now tripled the initial amount, and three-time offenders will be “publicly shamed” by having their names listed on a government website.

This regulation does not, of course, prevent people from smoking in their own private spaces. Amen Clinics knows this is a step in the right direction though. It just means that people in restaurants, on public transport, and in parks and other public areas–including workplaces–no longer have to worry about whether or not the person next to them will light up without their consent. With such a high population of smokers, non-smokers might have difficulty avoiding the fumes, a concern which can be a health problem for many individuals with lung issues.

The ban on public smoking is making plenty of headlines. Officials are even encouraging people to make hand signs to encourage others to remember not to smoke in public.

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