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Public smoking ban overdue in Kentucky

Publication Date: 2013-06-22
  • Author:Brent Cooper

A report came out six months ago that showed the state of Kentucky is sick due to smoking. Our state is ranked 50th out of 50 states for percentage of smokers (29 percent). Not surprisingly, we are also ranked 50th for percentage of cancer deaths.

These statistics are both tragic and embarrassing.

One quarter of our citizens are, unnecessarily, going through long hospital stays and early deaths, and our kids are following in their footsteps. Our state is an unhealthy place, and besides the toll it takes on people’s lives, our poor health is expensive and bad for business.

For that reason, among others, I am in favor of a statewide smoke-free law for public places. This is my personal opinion and does not reflect the Northern Kentucky organizations I am often associated with. Many of the top business leaders in our community whom I admire disagree with me on this issue.

I’m speaking out because the recent data is so troubling. I feel strongly that, as a state, we need to change...

From an economic development standpoint, implementing a smoke-free law would be good for our state.

It sends a message to businesses looking to locate here that we recognize the adverse health effects of smoking and are committed to improving the quality of our workforce and reducing costs.

The bottom line is this: Smoking is killing us. And it is costing us a lot of money and medical resources, today and in the future.

I urge you to advocate for smoke-free laws with our elected officials.

On this issue, we need to change the state we are in.

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