COUNCIL chiefs want to ban smoking in play areas throughout St Helens.
The measures - which are still being consulted on - would be introduced in the form of a voluntary code.
Research shows that reducing child exposure to smoking decreases the uptake of smoking among young people in the long term.
Councillor Alison Bacon, Cabinet Member for Environmental Protection said:
“Children learn their behaviour from adults, so it’s essential that in our communities tobacco use is not seen as part of everyday life.
“For example, children who live with smokers are at least twice as likely to become smokers themselves.
“Smoke free playgrounds reduce children’s exposure to smoking and, if implemented, we hope it will result in fewer young people taking up smoking in the future.
“It will also reduce levels of unsightly cigarette litter such as cigarette butts, matches, empty packets and wrappers in play areas.”
The initiative is being undertaken by St Helens Council, the Heart of Mersey campaign and the Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Trust
To contribute to the consultation please log on to http://applications.sthelens.gov.uk/ConsultationSuite/ and complete the short survey.