A concerned Parent of a childcare service where her daughter attends, saw employees from a neighbouring business smoking within 5 metres of the centre, even though smoking has been banned within the 5-metre range of all childcare centres in QLD since 2016.
Queensland Health advised that smoking was allowed in the area due to a loophole in the legislation, where exemptions apply if there is a house or business next door, meaning people can legally smoke on the adjoining private property, within the five-metre buffer zone.
The frustrated Parent ended up moving her child to another daycare provider "I was so disappointed. I could not believe it. I wanted to see the legislation enforced, and I felt let down. The legislation just isn't protecting our children".
The Director of the childcare service has worked with neighbouring businesses to move their smoking area away from the childcare service.
Cancer Council Queensland chief executive Chris McMillan said the exemptions to the laws have had unintended consequences.
"When you actually have an adjoining boundary to premises that are either a residential or commercial premises, then the buffer zone really is ineffective," Ms McMillan said.
"I think it's a loophole that needs to be investigated by the Government.
The same exemptions apply in other locations where smoking is banned, including schools, hospitals and bus stops.
Ms McMillan said she had written to Queensland's Health Minister Steven Miles and Education Minister Grace about the issue.
Howles, Melinda "Legal Loophole Allows Workers To Smoke Near Queensland Childcare Centre Play Area", ABC NEWS, 20th June 2019