To the Editor:
On behalf of the Clay County Tobacco Coalition, I want to congratulate the new owners of the soon to be renamed Yesterday's Pub for creating a healthy smoke-free environment.
Seventy-six percent of Hoosiers do not smoke. Therefore, the new business will be meeting the health needs and wants of the majority.
There is a misconception that smoke-free establishments discourage and alienate smoking customers, diminishing sales and resulting in higher unemployment rates among the hospitality industry.
However, non-smokers outnumber smokes 3-1, and this would recover and even increase any sales lost from smokers because non-smokers have been avoiding establishments that allow smoking.
Most importantly, there is a deeper understanding from both the smokers and the non-smokers in regard to second-hand smoke.
As the third leading cause of preventable death in the country, second-hand smoke kills 53,000 non-smokers in the U.S. each year.
For every eight smokes who die from tobacco products, one non-smoker is killed by second-hand smoke.
Smokers are more aware and thoughtful of the health needs of others.
The simple act of taking a few minutes to go outside to smoke and then rejoining their group inside is saving lives.
Employers and employees of the new establishment will also benefit from the smoke-free work place. Benefits include reduced absenteeism, increased productivity and better overall health among employees.
And best of all, those working at Yesterday's Pub will not have to choose between their job and their health.
Director for the Clay County Tobacco