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News Summary

Poll backs workplace smoking ban

Publication Date: 2009-01-29
  • Author:BOB LOWRY
  • Publication:The Huntsville Times

Groups tout 78% support, ready to push for bill again

Supporters of smoke-free workplaces in Alabama said Tuesday they're encouraged by a newly released poll that shows 78 percent of Alabamians favor a statewide smoking ban in all businesses.

A coalition of groups announced Tuesday it would again ask the Alabama Legislature to pass such a ban during the 2009 session.

Sen. Vivian Figures, D-Mobile, has failed in 11 previous attempts to get such a bill through both houses. It has previously passed in the Senate, only to die in the House.

Figures said Tuesday this year she has the support of the Alabama Restaurant Association.

"We intend to pass this bill this session," she said. "It's been a long time coming and is definitely overdue. We want a healthy Alabama because we believe the citizens of Alabama deserve that."

The poll, commissioned by the American Cancer Society, also showed that 79 percent of likely voters in Alabama believe elected officials have a responsibility to protect public health and 95 percent believe second-hand smoke poses a health risk.