Residents of Arizona, Nevada and Ohio will soon enjoy smokefree air in public places and most workplaces, thanks to voter-approved ballot measures. The new smokefree laws, combined with other statewide laws and hundreds of local laws already in place around the U.S., mean that smokefree workplaces will now be the norm for the majority of the U.S. population.
Arizona and Ohio have initiatives on the ballot to end smoking in public places and workplaces, including bars and restaurants. If the measures pass, these states will join Florida, California, New York and 9 other states that have enacted comprehensive laws protecting workers from unnecessary exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke. Instead of fighting these measures head-on as they always have, though, R.J.
The September 2006 issue of a Denver area LGBT magazine, MetroMode, carries a curious full-page ad titled "Busting the Myths of Smoke-Free Colorado" that urges readers to protest Colorado's Clean Indoor Air Act, the law that ended smoking in most workplaces (including bars and restaurants) as of July 1, 2006.
The University of California system is debating whether UC schools should continue to accept research funding from tobacco companies. Proponents of the funding invoke the slippery-slope argument, saying if UC refuses tobacco funds, then pharmaceutical companies might be next. Others argue that eliminating tobacco funding would infringe on academics’ freedom of speech.
Governments should learn a lesson from tobacco marketeers and restrict junk food advertising aimed at children, says a prominent obesity specialist. Boyd Swinburn, professor of population health at Deakin University in Australia, was one of several members of a global task force on obesity who called for international standards on advertising food products to children.
Reynolds American, the parent company of the R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, is spending approximately $40 million in an attempt to defeat anti-smoking ballot initiatives to be voted on in November. Part of the tobacco industry campaign involves having front groups promoting alternative measures to those proposed by tobacco control groups.