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Health Promot Int. 2004 Dec;19(4):482-8. Epub 2004 Nov 8.

National legislation on school smoking restrictions in eight European countries.

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Research Centre for Health Promotion, University of Bergeb, Norway.



To review and compare national legislation addressing smoking at school in eight European countries during the late 1990s.


The data are from the EC-funded Control of Adolescent Smoking (CAS) study in eight European countries. The information on national legislation was gathered during the period 1998-1999, through a review of scientific and official documents and interviews with key informants in each country.


Four of the participating countries (Austria, French-speaking Belgium, Finland and Norway) had legislation specifically restricting smoking at school, while the remaining countries (Denmark, North Rhein Westphalia region of Germany, Scotland and Wales in the UK) did not have such legislation in place. In those countries with legislation in place, smoking among students aged 15 years and younger was not permitted. The position with regard to teacher smoking varied considerably among countries, but with the exception of Finland, there was no legislation regulating outdoor smoking by teachers during school hours.


The findings suggest that there were inconsistencies within countries in terms of legislation that had been developed and the enforcement, compliance and monitoring practices that were in place. Further work is required to develop and resource such mechanisms, although it may be possible to build on existing practice, such as increasing the involvement of school health services, school inspectorate services or working through health promoting school networks already established in many countries.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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