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Tobacco Enforcement

Tobacco Enforcement Officers (TEOs) are designated as Provincial Offences Officers by the Province of Ontario with authority to enforce the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017.

In the community, the health unit’s TEOs are responsible for:

  • enforcing compliance of all indoor and outdoor places designated 100% smoke- vape- and cannabis-free under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act
  • inspecting and enforcing tobacco and electronic cigarette retailers for compliance with the laws governing the sale, supply, display and promotion of tobacco and vapour products.

New under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017:


Vaping and smoking tobacco and cannabis are prohibited:

  • inside workplaces and public places, including work vehicles    
  • in common areas of multi-unit housing buildings
  • on playgrounds and sporting areas and within 20 metres of those locations
  • Inside a car with anyone under 16 years of age (tobacco and e cigarettes).   NOTE: the use of cannabis is prohibited at all times inside a vehicle and/or boat being driven or under someone's care or control. 
  • on hospital property and within nine metres of a hospital entrance
  • on bar and restaurant patios and within nine metres of the patio
  • on the grounds of a community recreational facility and within 20 metres of the grounds
  • on the grounds of a school and within 20 metres of the grounds.

Employers/ business owner signage requirements 

  • Provincial No Vaping and No Smoking signage must be posted by employers and business owners at their premises. (Available from the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit.)

Retailer Regulation

  • Retailers that are not specialty vape stores (e.g. convenience stores) cannot display vapour products.

 Among their duties, Tobacco Enforcement Officers:    


  • Inspect local businesses, public places, schools and workplaces to ensure a tobacco, vape, cannabis free environment and that proper signage is posted as required.
  • Inspect tobacco vendors to ensure they are complying with the law putting tobacco and vape products out of sight and promotional materials for vapes meet regulations.
  • Inspect tobacco vendors and electronic cigarette vendors using youth test shoppers to ensure stores will not sell tobacco or electronic cigarettes to anyone under 19 yrs. of age.
  • Lay charges where necessary and follow through with related court process.
  • Respond to complaints and requests from public for assistance to ensure compliance with SFOA 2017.

To lodge a tobacco-related complaint or request assistance call Health Connection at 705-721-7520 or toll-free at 1-877-721-7520 weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

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If you have any questions or concerns that require a response, please contact Health Connection directly.

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