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After you quit smoking, there is no longer a need to go out and light up. Which means that you more productive now that you are not devoting 2 hours of your 8 hour work day to smoking. But did you know:

  1. Smokers facing work restrictions on smoking consume 11-15% less than average and quit at a rate that is 84% higher than average… Milder workplace restrictions, such as smoking only in designated areas have much less impact on quitting rates and very little effect on consumption.” —Philip Morris
  2. A study conducted by the University California San Francisco reported that entirely smokefree workplaces were associated with a 3.8% reduction in smoking prevalence. Of those employees who continued to smoke, there was an average reduction in consumption of 3.1 fewer cigarettes per day. The combined effects of increased cessation and decreased consumption corresponded to a 29% relative reduction in tobacco use among all employees.
  3. A study conducted through the University of Missouri-Columbia investigated whether the rate of smoking cessation was higher among hospital employees than among other community employees not subject to a smokefree workplace policy. Over a period of three years. Hospital employees were found to be almost twice as likely as other community employees to quit smoking and tended to take a shorter time to quit.
  4. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of California, San Francisco investigated the effect of local workplace smoking laws in California on smoking cessation. The results of the study revealed that smokefree ordinances significantly increased the rate of smoking cessation – the stronger the ordinance, the higher the rate of cessation. While there was only a 19.1% cessation rate in areas with no ordinance, there was a 24.6% cessation rate in areas with weak ordinances, and a 26.4% cessation rate in areas with strong ordinances. Overall, researchers found that smokers who worked in communities with strong ordinances were 38% more likely to quit smoking than smokers in communities with no ordinance.
  5. Massachusetts introduced a comprehensive tobacco control program a number of years ago that brought together four elements of tobacco control: a cigarette tax increase; a mass media campaign; services for cessation and educational outreach; and the promotion of local smokefree ordinances. Prior to the program’s implementation, the annual decline in cigarette consumption for Massachusetts adults was comparable to that for the rest of the nation. The year following the program’s implementation  consumption in Massachusetts dropped 12% while it remained steady for the rest of the nation at 4%. After that the annual decline in cigarette consumption leveled off in comparison states (declining less than 1% a year). In Massachusetts, however, consumption continued to decline by more than 4% a year.
  6. Workplace smoking restrictions can significantly reduce smoking rates among young adults according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Adolescents who worked in a smokefree workplace were found to be 32% less likely to smoke than adolescents who worked in a workplace with no smoking restrictions. Household smoking restrictions were also found to significantly reduce adolescent cigarette consumption and increase cessation rates.
  7. A total of 97,882 indoor workers were questioned regarding their smoking behavior and the smoking policies at their place of work. Researchers found that a 100% smokefree workplace was associated with a 6% reduction in smoking prevalence and a 14% decrease in the average daily cigarette consumption of smokers relative to workplaces with weak or no smoking restrictions. These results were found to be true for all demographic groups and in nearly all industries.
  8. The Community Intervention Trial for Smoking Cessation (COMMIT) surveyed the behavior of 8,271 cigarette smokers in 22 North American communities. Participants were questioned regarding their tobacco use behaviors, demographic characteristics, and workplace smoking policies. Employees in smokefree workplaces were found to be 25% more likely to make a serious attempt to quit smoking and 25% more likely to succeed than employees not subject to a smokefree workplace policy. Among continuing smokers, those in smokefree workplaces smoked an average of 2.75 fewer cigarettes a day.
  9. A study published through the National Bureau of Economic Research investigated the effect of work area smoking bans on smoking behavior. Data from the National Health Interview Surveys was used to obtain data for over 18,000 workers. Researchers found that workplace smoking bans are associated with a 5% to 6% decline in smoking prevalence and an average reduction in cigarette consumption of 2.3 cigarettes per day per smoker.

What the Tobacco Industry thinks about workplace smoking restrictions…

10. “Smoking bans are the biggest challenge we have ever faced. Quit rate goes fr0m  5% to 21% when smokers work in nonsmoking environments.”

11. “The immediate implication for our business is clear: if our consumers have fewer opportunities to enjoy our products, they will use them less frequently and the result will be an adverse impact on our bottom line.”

12. “Those who say they work under [smoking] restrictions smoked about one-and-one-quarter fewer cigarettes each day than those who don’t. That may sound light but remember we’re talking about light restrictions, too. Those 220 people in our survey who work under smoking restrictions represent some 15 million Americans. That one-and-one-quarter per day cigarette reduction, then, means nearly 7 billion fewer cigarettes smoked each year because of workplace smoking restrictions… At a dollar a pack, even the lightest of workplace smoking restrictions is costing this industry 233 million dollars a year in revenue. How much more will it cost us with far more restrictive laws such as those in Suffolk County and Fort Collins now being enacted?”

With more and more restrictions being placed on where and when you can smoke, isn’t the choice clear? You need to quit smoking. Why work so hard to find a place to smoke, when all you have to do is quit? Why face the scorn of others who frown on you when they see you smoking?

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