Congratulations to the City of Waverly on taking steps toward a healthier community by adopting a tobacco and nicotine free policy for all City parks and trails! The policy was approved at the City Council meeting on Monday, April 15. This was a combined effort of Waverly Leisure Services and Waverly Health Center.
As advisors to the City Council, the Leisure Services Commission unanimously agreed that a tobacco and nicotine free parks policy supports the original purpose of The City’s parks and trails system and reinforces the Leisure Services mission: “We believe in making the good life better by providing safe, modern, well maintained, and aesthetically pleasing environments for the community of today and tomorrow.”
“I am pleased that this policy will enhance the outdoor environments for local families and visitors that utilize the Waverly parks system,” stated Tab Ray, Director of Leisure Services.
The policy states that tobacco and nicotine use (including but not limited to cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, snuff, pipes, snus, electronic smoking devices and nicotine products that are not Food and Drug Administration approved for tobacco cessation), is prohibited at all times on parks and trails grounds.
The policy excludes the Waverly Golf Course, Memorial Park Ball Diamonds (except during youth ballgames when the prohibition will be in place), and the County Fair area during Fair events. When the fair and ball diamonds move from the current location, all of Memorial Park will become tobacco and nicotine free. The policy is effective immediately and signs are being installed at all parks and trails to notify patrons of the change.
“I think it’s very important that city government takes public health positions that promote healthy lifestyles for citizens of all ages,” said Councilperson Ann Rathe. “Along with other measures we’ve taken to make Waverly a safer place to bike, walk, and play, this policy is one more step in a healthy direction.”
Some benefits of this policy include:
- Increased number of tobacco and nicotine free environments in Waverly, protecting citizens from the dangers of secondhand smoke and tobacco litter.
- Emphasized role modeling behavior that encourages adults to set an example for youth by refraining from tobacco use, leading to future generations with lower tobacco use statistics.
- Enhanced outdoor spaces for community members to gather and recreate.
“This policy sends a positive message about the future of tobacco prevention and the stance our community takes on continuous improvement of health and well-being,” stated Amanda Ramthun, Community Health Specialist at Waverly Health Center. “We know that this policy alone will not solve all the issues we face with tobacco use but it is a huge step in the right direction.”
For information about policy specific details contact Waverly Leisure Services at (319) 352-6263.
For information regarding community tobacco prevention efforts or tobacco cessation resources contact Waverly Health Center at (319) 483-1361.