In Australia, control of environmental tobacco smoke and the issue of smoking in public places is one that generally falls within the jurisdiction of the state and territory governments.
All state and territory governments have laws prohibiting smoking in cinemas and theatres, most forms of public transport and in food preparation areas. Most jurisdictions have introduced broader bans on smoking in enclosed public places such as restaurants and shopping centres, pubs and nightclubs and in cars with children. Some jurisdictions have also introduced bans on smoking in outdoor areas such as outdoor eating and drinking places, building entrances, sporting facilities and public beaches.
Each state and territory also has occupational health and safety legislation, which imposes a duty on all employers to provide, within reason, a workplace that is free of hazards to health for employees and those entering the premises. This includes smoke-free work environments.
The Australian Government has acted where it has had the power to do so. For example, smoking is prohibited in Commonwealth workplaces, aircraft, airports, interstate trains and federally registered motor coaches.
Page last reviewed: 18 April 2011