Smoking in Boston
BOSTON - Smokers may be huddling around office entrances to avoid blasts of arctic wind in the wintertime, but come spring they will likely still be there due to a ban on smoking in Boston public parks.
Cin Poghos, 20, a freshman at Emerson College, thinks the ban assumes people can't practice common courtesy.
"That's a bit absurd. Where does that money go? That's a little high. $250 for just that, " said Poghos, smoking a Marlboro Gold on Boylston Street across from Boston Common.
Poghos and her fellow smokers will be subjected to a public awareness blitz from the Boston Parks Department, Police Department and Public Health Commission before the full implementation of the ban. The Parks Department is expected to add "no smoking" signage to the entrances of all parks in the city before the law goes into effect.
"This kind of pissed me off. The Common is such a huge place, and so is the Public Gardens. If you're smoking in one area of the park, it's not going to affect every single person in the park, " said 19-year-old Sheeba Wood of Dorchester.
Wood said she gets the issues surrounding second-hand smoke and children but thinks she is a considerate smoker.
With a Pall Mall in her hand, Anna Drummond, 19, originally from Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., said she was dreading the ban because she thinks it gives police just another reason to hassle people.
"I am already profiled for so many different things. Adding this is just not helping, " said Drummond.
Mayor Martin J. Walsh said the law was passed before he took office and would be difficult to overturn. "I am supportive of making sure that our young people have a clean environment to play in. Parks weren't meant for people to be smoking in. If people want to smoke, there are plenty of places for them to smoke, " he said.
When asked if it was something the police should actively enforce Walsh said, "Absolutely, it's the law. You have to enforce the law."