The Northern Ireland Civil Service (NICS) introduced a ban on smoking in all government premises with effect from 1 January 2005. The policy, as detailed in the NICS staff handbook, states that,
“leaving the premises to smoke will not be permitted outside of the lunchtime period taken by staff”.
In all cases, the time spent on lunch must be recorded.
Line management has a responsibility to ensure that staff adhere to the policy and any breaches of the ban may be dealt with in accordance with the conduct and discipline section of the staff handbook.