Keep Washington’s Indoor Air Smokefree

 

Keep Washington’s Indoor Air Smokefree

Vote NO on SB 5070

 

Tobacco use causes one-third of all cancer deaths and is the #1 cause of preventable death in the US. This includes cigar use, which is possibly more toxic than cigarette smoke.[1]

 

Going Against a Popular Law Approved by Washingtonians

  • In 2005, voters in ALL 39 Washington counties voted to pass Initiative 901, the clean indoor air law, and it had 63% support statewide. 
  • This Clean Indoor Air law made it illegal to smoke in all indoor public places and workplaces in our state.
  • If passed, SB 5070 would go against the will of the people in Washington by allowing smoking in 100 bars/restaurants and 500 tobacco shops, leaving employees exposed to deadly carcinogens. 

The Results Are In

  • Since the implementation of the clean indoor air law, indoor air pollution has decreased by 88% in bars and restaurants, and compliance with the law is high.[2]
  • Reducing exposure to secondhand smoke decreases the risk for coronary heart disease and cancer of the oral cavity, larynx, esophagus, and lung, among other chronic diseases.

A Drop in the Bucket

  • The revenue estimated to come in from cigar lounge and retailer licenses is insignificant when compared to the $1.95 billion that tobacco use costs our state every year for direct health care expenses.

No Safe Level of Exposure

  • The Board of Directors for the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) confirms that there is no ventilation system or other air filtration technology that can eliminate all of the health risks caused by exposure to secondhand smoke.[3]

Forced to Choose Between Your Job or Your Health

  • Every employee has a right to a safe workplace and that includes being protected from the dangers of secondhand smoke.
  • An employee should never be forced to sign away their health or face unemployment in a weak economy.


[1] National Cancer Institute, Cigar Smoking and Cancer, http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Tobacco/cigars

[2] American Lung Association, Air Quality Monitoring Survey 2006.

[3] Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights, Get the Facts – ASHRAE, http://www.no-smoke.org/getthefacts.php?id=56

 

 

Myths vs. Facts of Cigar Smoke

 

 

“The U.S. Surgeon General and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has classified secondhand tobacco smoke as a Class A carcinogen, citing that there is no safe level of exposure to it.[1] 

 

Myth: Because cigar smoke isn’t inhaled, it’s not as dangerous as cigarette smoke.

 

Fact: The dangers of secondhand smoke are not limited to that produced by cigarettes.  Cigar smoking causes coronary heart disease and cancer of the oral cavity, larynx, esophagus, and lung.

 

In fact, the National Cancer Institute has done studies showing that cigar smoke is possibly more toxic than cigarette smoke because:

  • It contains higher levels of cancer causing substances like nitrosamines.
  • There is more cancer-causing tar per gram in cigars than cigarettes
  • Most cigars are larger than cigarettes and contain more tobacco and are therefore smoked for a longer period of time, which leads to increased exposure to many toxic substances (including carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, ammonia, cadmium, and other substances).[2]

 

Myth: Employees who work in a store or restaurant that sells cigars should expect to be exposed to secondhand smoke.

 

Fact: Every employee has a right to a safe workplace and that includes being protected from the dangers of secondhand smoke. An employee should never be forced to choose to be exposed to deadly carcinogens at work or face unemployment in a weak economy.

 

Myth: Air filtration systems can eliminate the dangers of secondhand smoke.

 

Fact: The Board of Directors for the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) confirms that no ventilation system or other air filtration technology can eliminate all of the health risks caused by exposure to secondhand smoke.[3]

 

Myth: Cigars aren’t as addictive as cigarettes.

 

Fact: Even though cigar smoke is often not inhaled, it contains high levels of nicotine that are still absorbed through the inhalation through the mouth and nose and absorption through the lining of the mouth.²

 

A single cigar can potentially provide as much nicotine as an entire pack of cigarettes[4]

 

Myth: When the Clean Indoor Air law passed, people didn’t intend to ban smoking in tobacco shops or cigar bars.

 

Fact: In 2005, voters in ALL 39 Washington counties voted to pass Initiative 901, the clean indoor air law, and it had 63% support statewide.  This law made it illegal to smoke in all indoor public places and workplaces in our state.  The initiative clearly stated that smoking would be banned in both bars and tobacco shops, amongst all other places of employment.

 

Initiative 901 Ballot Measure Summary: This measure would prohibit smoking in public places and in places of employment. Current laws allowing designation of certain smoking areas would be repealed, including current provisions allowing designation of an entire restaurant, bar, tavern, bowling alley, skating rink, or tobacco shop as a smoking area. The prohibition would include areas within 25 feet of entrances, exits, opening windows and ventilation intakes, unless shorter distances are approved by the director of the local health department.[5]

 

Allowing for an exemption to the Clean Indoor Air law would go against the will of the people.

 

 

"Tobacco in any form is a deadly product. Research continues to show that cigar smoking can cause a number of serious health problems. The rising rates of cigar smoking, especially among young people, point out the need for public awareness and a wide-ranging national policy to deal with this growing public health problem."[6]



[1] Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights, Get the Facts – Air Filtration, http://www.no-smoke.org/getthefacts.php?id=57

[2] National Cancer Institute, Cigar Smoking and Cancer, http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Tobacco/cigars

[3] Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights, Get the Facts – ASHRAE, http://www.no-smoke.org/getthefacts.php?id=56

 

[4] Baker F, Ainsworth SR, Dye JT, et al.  Health risks associated with cigar smoking.  Journal of the American Medical Association 2000; 284(6):735–740

[5] Washington Secretary of State, Proposed Initiatives to the People 2005,  www.sos.wa.gov/elections/initiatives/people.aspx?y=2005



Join ACS CAN Today!