Health Effects of Tobacco

Tobacco and the law

In 2020, the Government of the Northwest Territories overhauled its tobacco control legislation to include the regulation of nicotine vapour products. The new legislation further restricts where tobacco and vapour products can be used, and how they may be accessed, sold, and displayed. If you’re not ready to quit tobacco yet, make sure you’re in the know about its legal use.

Who can use tobacco?

In the Northwest Territories, it is illegal for any person under the age of 19 to purchase or even attempt to purchase tobacco and vapour products. Anyone who appears to be under the age of 25 years of age must provide identification to purchase tobacco and vapour products.

Who can purchase tobacco?

  • It is illegal for a person to give or sell tobacco or vapour products of any kind to a person under 19 years of age. This includes, but is not limited to, loose tobacco, cigarettes, chewing tobacco, and vapour products. Tobacco used for Indigenous practices or ceremonies is an exception to this rule.
  • This age limit also applies to the purchase and supply of tobacco and vapour product accessories such as pipes, filters or clips.
  • The sale of tobacco and vapour products and accessories in pharmacies or stores that contain pharmacies is illegal. It’s also illegal for tobacco and vapour products to be in recreational, health and educational facilities and other similar public spaces.
  • Tobacco and vapour products cannot be sold from vending machines.
  • Tobacco and vapour products cannot be promoted or displayed in stores where persons under the age of 19 have access.

Where can I use tobacco products?

The new legislation generally bans smoking, of any product,  in public places including those places where children and youth ordinarily gather such as playgrounds and sporting fields. Smoking is also prohibited in the common areas of apartment buildings and condos. Pay attention to signage on fences and near building doors, they will usually let you know where you are allowed to smoke or how far away from the premises you have to be.