Study Shows Rhode Islanders Support Smoking Bans, What's Your Take?

A recent study showed many Rhode Islanders would support a smoking ban in certain public areas. What's Your Take?

A recent survey conducted by the Rhode Island Department of Health (HEALTH) and a handful of community partner organizations shows an increased demand for smoke-free outdoor areas throughout Rhode Island.

More than 900 Rhode Island residents were asked to rate how supportive they would be if different outdoor areas such as beaches, parks, playgrounds, and sports and recreational venues no longer allowed smoking.  Overall, the results—including those from many smokers— favored such bans.
 “Smoke-free outdoor areas would not only protect public health, but also reduce cigarette litter, decrease the risk of fire, send a positive message to kids, and create supportive environments for smokers to finally kick the habit,” said Director of HEALTH Michael Fine, MD.  
A number of communities have already taken steps to adopt smoke-free outdoor air policies. Last month Central Falls passed an ordinance banning smoking on school grounds, playgrounds, parks, and public events involving youth, families, and seniors. Similarly, Woonsocket recently celebrated their first smoke-free Autumnfest and Charlestown has banned smoking on their town beaches.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), governmental and nongovernmental organizations are encouraged to redouble their efforts to make environment more conducive to quitting than continuing to use tobacco.  As more places become smoke-free, it’s important that smokers are supported in their attempts to quit, when and if they are motivated. The American Cancer Society’s 37th annual Great American Smokeout provides a great opportunity for smokers to get the help they need.  

What do you think?  Should outdoor areas such as beaches, parks, playgrounds, and sports and recreational venues no longer allowed smoking?

Sunny Shores November 15, 2012 at 03:41 PM
I wish they'd legislate something that restricts second hand smoke from entering someone's home. Non-smokers who live in apartments and condos or have close neighbors suffer when second hand smoke comes in through walls and windows. Try telling a smoker they can't smoke in their apartment or on their deck or in their yard because their smoke is entering a non-smokers residence.
Daniel Fortworth November 15, 2012 at 05:25 PM
No More Laws. It's getting really stupid people. I'm more offended by second hand laws (laws that I didnt ask for but must suffer through) than I am by second hand smoke. Enough already. Stop trampling on people's rights! This is America, not China or Russia, or worse, a Middle East Muslim country.
Sunny Shores November 15, 2012 at 05:41 PM
Daniel Yours is a typical smokers response. Your RIGHT to pollute your air and that around you should trump someones RIGHT to live in a smoke free environment. This is why society has had to impose so many regulations and why more is needed. I have no problem with someone smoking in their own home as long as their second hand smoke does not invade a non-smokers right to breathe clean air. I would like to see smokers bear more of the cost of their care when the effects of their CHOICE to smoke eventually catches up with them in the form of cancers, heart and lung diseases. They CHOSE to smoke why should society have to pay for their CHOICE by increased health premiums for all to pay for their care. After all it was their RIGHT to CHOOSE to smoke and pollute their own health.
Dryheave November 15, 2012 at 06:37 PM
I DO NOT smoke....I have no problem with "NO Smoking" bans as far as INDOOR areas but I think people should be allowed to smoke anywhere they want OUTDOORS...I mean really, get over it people. Smoke dissipates very rapidly OUTDOORS.....The people that complain about smoking outdoors are the same people who complain about, "Waiting for a 1 car funeral to pass by".....some people just LOVE to complain...It's like a hobby to them
Aidan Hadley November 16, 2012 at 03:19 PM
In fact, smoking does NOT dissipate rapidly outdoors. An excellent Stanford study a few years ago demonstrated that even outside non-smokers who are downwind of a smoker can inhale harmful amounts of second-hand smoke. That's why these outdoor smoking bans have begun to spread. There is a real danger to non-smokers. Not to mention the billions of cigarette butts that are spread everywhere, which do not biodegrade and leech toxins into local water tables. Lastly, smoking bans have been proven to reduce the number of smokers. And lung cancer is the leading cause of preventable death in the US (killing more people annually than prostate, breast, ovarian and uterine cancer combined).


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