Assessing compliance to smoke-free legislation in Kuala Lumpur
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Faculty of Economics and Management, University Putra Malaysia, Seri Kembangan, Malaysia
Department Health & Environment, Kuala Lumpur City Hall, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Publication date: 2021-09-02
Corresponding author
Norashidah M. Nor   

University Putra Malaysia, JALAN UNIVERSITI 1 Serdang, 43400 Seri Kembangan, Selangor, Malaysia
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2021;19(Suppl 1):A2
Malaysia aims to achieve the endgame target with a smoking prevalence of less than 5% by 2045. Being the capital of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur is a smoke-free city known as “Smoke-free Kuala Lumpur” initiated on 18 May 2019. All public places in Kuala Lumpur are gazetted as smoke-free areas to protect non-smokers from second-hand smoke. The primary challenge for the local authority is a compliance level to the implementation of the legal provision of Smoke-Free Legislation (SFL). Therefore, there is a need to measure the level of compliance among the gazetted areas to strengthen the enforcement of SFL.

This study aims to measure the level of compliance to the Smoke-Free Legislation among public places in Kuala Lumpur. The priority scale for implementation and enforcement strategies are also being examined.

It was an observational study that utilized cross-sectional survey among 400 public places across six categories namely; government buildings, hotels, restaurants, religious places, shopping complex and walkways. The sample numbers based on the probability proportional to size sampling technique and data collection was carried out using the convenient sampling method. The study utilised five indicators of compliances; absence of active smoking, evidence of "No Smoking Signage", smoking aids, odour emanating from cigarettes and cigarette butts.

The average level of compliance among all the public places was 48.4% with the highest observed at restaurants (64%) and the least in walkways (32.5%). The highest priority for enforcement should be at shopping complexes followed by walkways since they have more than a 50% presence of active smokers.

Findings from this study indicated the needs for the authority to impose stricter enforcement since none of these places has fully complied with the smoke-free legislation. However, different enforcement strategies should be considered for different places according to the non-compliance reasons.

This study is funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies in partnership with Vital Strategies and Kuala Lumpur City Hall.
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