Publication Date: 7/31/2007
- Author:Chuck Stokes, Editorial Director
- Publication:WXYZ.com ABC Detroit
Legislation to ban smoking in most Michigan restaurants, bars, casinos, and workplaces just took a big step forward. In a non-partisan vote, the State House Commerce Committee sent the bill to the full floor. We urge House lawmakers to pass the proposed measure in a way that will make the Michigan Senate take notice!
Michigan should join 32 other states in making its citizens healthier and its restaurants more family friendly. The rights of smokers must not supersede the health of those who do not smoke. According to the American Cancer and Lung Associations, second hand smoke causes roughly 35-thousand deaths every year. Smoking is also a health risk that those who work in restaurants and bars should not be exposed to. However, the House bill wisely makes an exemption for cigar bars and some tobacco specialty shops. But we do not favor exempting Detroit Casinos from the smoking ban. To do so would give them an unfair advantage over nearby restaurants and bars. Also, other states such as California and New York have proven that a smoking ban actually increases business. Even Ohio and Illinois here in the midwest have joined the smoking ban brigade. State Senator Ray Basham is right when he says, "if Michigan doesn't hurry up, we'll be called the Great 'Late' State!" Pass House Bill #4163 - the smoking ban bill - quickly!