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News Summary

Ban sought on all smoking in the workplace

Publication Date: 3/10/2009
  • Author:DANIEL BARLOW
  • Publication:Times Argus

A bill hitting the floor of the Vermont Senate next week would completely ban cigarette use and other forms of smoking at all workplaces across the state.

Vermont was one of the first states to begin restricting second-hand smoke at workplaces when it passed the Smokefree Workplace Act in 1987 – prohibiting the use of tobacco and other smoking products under most circumstances.

But tobacco-free advocates say that law has loopholes that do allow workplace smoking under some circumstances. The new bill, which is expected to easily find support in the Vermont Senate, would close those loopholes.

Tina Zuk, the coordinator of the Coalition for a Tobacco Free Vermont, said current state law allows workplaces to have indoor smoking rooms under specific conditions. She said this is unfair for non-smoking workers, who expect that they would not be exposed to second-hand smoke while on the job...

The bill, S.7, is expected to be voted on in the Vermont Senate on Tuesday, March 17. An identical bill has been introduced in the Vermont House, but it has not yet had a committee hearing.