INDIANAPOLIS, IN | August 11, 2020
There is strong support (70%) among Hoosiers for making public places, like bars, restaurants, and casinos smokefree, according to a new poll released today by the American Lung Association in Indiana.
“COVID-19 has driven over 150 casinos nationwide to implement new smokefree policies, including three in Indiana. These new poll results should encourage other Indiana casinos to prioritize the health and safety of their employees and guests by making their facilities smokefree indoors,” said Nick Torres, Advocacy Director for the Lung Association.
“Smokefree environments protect the health of workers and customers from dangerous secondhand smoke and e-cigarette emissions.”
In fact, poll results show that over half (55%) of Hoosier voters consider secondhand smoke to be a serious health hazard. Other key findings include:
- Two-thirds (65%) of voters are in favor of prohibiting smoking and vaping inside casinos.
- If smoking were prohibited in casinos, 38% would be more likely to visitand 45% say this change would have no impact.
- A 51% majority of those who visit casinos once or twice a year would be more likely to come if casinos were smoke-free – a significant potential market expansion.
- If smoking were prohibited in casinos, voters say…
- It would be a more pleasant experience for customers (71% agree).
- It would be cleaner and safer for customers and workers (79% agree).
- Voters don’t think casino workers should have to choose between their health and a job:
- Nearly four-fifths (79%) say casino workers should not have to be exposed to second-hand smoke at work, and casinos should prioritize the health and safety of workers and customers over profits.
Survey response data are available for media upon request.
“Secondhand smoke causes lung cancer and heart disease and worsens existing health conditions including asthma and COPD. Everyone deserves the chance to lead a healthy life, and that means having a safe work environment free from the health harms associated with secondhand smoke,” said Torres.
“Indiana’s weak smokefree air law leaves bar and casino workers at risk of secondhand smoke exposure. In Illinois and Ohio, casino workers are protected from secondhand smoke by law. Michigan has also taken strong steps to reopen all casinos smokefree as part of COVID-19 precautions. Indiana should strive for the same workplace protections as our neighboring states,” he said.
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, which has a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and is a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.