Six-month Awareness Phase of Buena Park’s New Smoke-free Ordinance Begins

The City Council approved in July the first comprehensive smoke-free policy in Orange County, including most outdoor public spaces and multi-unit residences

August 10, 2023

Buena Park, Calif. – Buena Park is launching its new smoke-free ordinance today with a six-month awareness phase, allowing residents, businesses and visitors to adapt to the changes before the law is actively enforced. In July, the Buena Park City Council unanimously passed the first comprehensive smoke-free policy in Orange County to prohibit the use of tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, in multi-unit residences and most outdoor spaces such as bus stops, entryways and public events.

“Any exposure to secondhand smoke, even outdoors, can have adverse effects on people’s health,” said Lynda Barbour, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) Southern California government relations director. “The implementation of this comprehensive smoke-free ordinance marks a watershed moment for public health in Buena Park, as secondhand smoke can cause lung cancer, heart disease, diabetes and other serious conditions, and is a common trigger for asthma.”

In California, over 60% of people of color (mostly comprised of Latino residents) live in multi-unit housing, where secondhand smoke can travel through ventilation systems, cracks in walls, light fixtures and plumbing.

“Comprehensive smoke-free policies that include multi-unit residences play a pivotal role in reducing tobacco-related health disparities by protecting everyone’s right to breathe smoke-free air and live in safe and healthy environments,” said Barbour. “They also help denormalize smoking, which reduces the number of people – especially youth – who start smoking and supports those trying to quit.

Nearly 22% of cancer deaths in California are caused by smoking, and the state’s annual health care costs directly caused by smoking surpass $15 billion.

“Tobacco use and secondhand smoke exposure cost us dearly, with limited-income communities and people of color bearing the brunt of their harmful effects. We commend our partners at America On Track and the many residents who have worked tirelessly to secure this progress. We applaud Buena Park City Council’s leadership in enacting this strong public health protection,” added Barbour.

Free resources and services on quitting tobacco products can be found at in English and Spanish. For help in Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean and Vietnamese, visit


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Priscilla Cabral-Pérez
Regional Multicultural Media Advocacy Associate Director