Indiana House Approves Statewide Smoking Ban

by Rick Howlett on January 31, 2011

Supporters of a comprehensive statewide smoking ban in Indiana say they’ll ask the state Senate to remove exemptions included in a bill passed by the House Monday.

The Republican-led House voted 68-31 for a smoking ban that excludes casinos, bars, clubs and nursing homes.

Danielle Patterson chairs the Indiana Campaign For Smoke-Free Air.

“We are concerned with the current status of the bill. It is not as strong as we would like, so we’re hoping that once it goes to the Senate that we will have the time and our advocates reach their senators so we can strengthen the bill. We want to work on it. We feel that we can make it stronger,” said Danielle Patterson, who chairs the Indiana Campaign For Smoke-Free Air.

Leaders of the GOP-controlled Senate say they will give the bill a committee hearing. Previous bans have stalled in the chamber after winning House approval. Governor Mitch Daniels says he’ll sign a smoking ban into law if legislators approve it.

Comments Closed


Christopher Wiggs January 31, 2011 at 9:35 pm

Why is it that only 25% of the Indiana population smoke and 75% are nonsmokers, yet the law is accommodating to the smokers. There are a lot of people who work at Casinos, Bars, and Nursing homes that do not want to breathe smoke. Where the vote is decided the room should be filled with smoke and see how they like it.

Frances February 2, 2011 at 2:25 pm

Right ON!!! Very Well Said and to the Point. Nursing Homes exempt, Why? Their health doesn’t count? This IS an easy decision NO SMOKING in Casino’s, Nursing Homes and Bars. It seems to ALWAYS go back to the M-O-N-E-Y. Those who have $$ and those who don’t. Shame on the law makers!

Jill February 1, 2011 at 11:42 am

I agree. Any statewide policy needs to protect all workers from secondhand smoke, wherever they choose to work. I hope our officials have the sense to remove the exemptions and create a healthier Indiana.

Thomas Laprade February 1, 2011 at 2:12 pm

An alternative to smoking bans

If the public was honestly and truthfully informed about the effects of second-hand smoke, there would be fewer no-smoking laws in this country.
A little smoke from a handful of crushed leaves and some paper that is mixed with the air of a decently ventilated venue is going to harm or kill you?

There has never been a single study showing that exposure to the low levels of smoke found in bars and restaurants with decent modern ventilation and filtration systems kills or harms anyone.

As to the annoyance of smoking, a compromise between smokers and non-smokers can be reached, through setting a quality standard and the use of modern ventilation technology.

Air ventilation can easily create a comfortable environment that removes not just passive smoke, but also and especially the potentially serious contaminants that are independent from smoking.

Thomas Laprade

For additional info

Frances February 2, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Hmm, I guess you smoke and/or own a bar, a casino, no wait a nursing home.

Andrea February 1, 2011 at 6:01 pm

Thomas – According to the Amercian Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers
have concluded that there is no “modern ventillation system” that can eliminate the toxins from tobacco smoke. Remove visible smoke, yes? Eliminate odor, yes? Rid microscopic tixins and particles, NO.

Besides, when was the last time you were in a smoking area that qualified as a decently and comfortably ventillated, anyway? The blue haze of smoke persists in many places despite well intentioned systems.

And what happens during the time it takes for ventillation system to work? Workers and patrons are exposed to toxic fumes, that’s what..

And, there are numerous studies that show the effect of secondhand smoke on arteries and blood clotting as well as on the respitratory tract.

You could be right. Maybe “a little little smoke from a handful of crushed leaves and some paper that is mixed with the air of a decently ventilated venue” might not harm or kill someone. But smoke from hundreds or thousands of crushed leaves and paper mixed with air over hundreds of hours of work exposure certainly could- has – and does.

Furthermore, remember that smokers in an indoor smoking venue compound their risks by inhaling their secondhand smoke and that of others.

The most reasonable act is to eliminate smoking from indoor venues.

Andrea February 1, 2011 at 6:05 pm

jill and Christopher – contact your Indiana legislators and tell them how you feel. On this issue it seems that the opponents are more vocal- despite the fact that polls show most Hoosiers want smoke free venues. Make some noise, my friends. Everyone deserves smoke free air. .

Sally February 2, 2011 at 10:13 am

It’s past time for Indiana to have a smoke-free law. Numerous scientific studies show that secondhand smoke is more than just an annoyance. It’s a killer. We need to protect employees of all types of businesses from secondhand smoke.

KFetz February 2, 2011 at 1:17 pm

No one should have to trade their health for a paycheck. All workers deserve the same protections that many of us take for granted – just because someone works in the hospitality sector does not mean they are second class citizens that deserve consideration.
No one is attempting to make smoking illegal, simply requiring you to take it outside allows you to smoke and allows those working to breathe safe air. Tobacco ordinances that move smoke outside are the compromise between exposing workers to toxic smoke and a complete ban on tobacco and most of the country already has these rules in place.

CarolT February 2, 2011 at 2:37 pm

The anti-smokers commit flagrant scientific fraud by ignoring more than 50 studies which show that human papillomaviruses cause at least 1/4 of non-small cell lung cancers. Smokers and passive smokers are more likely to have been exposed to this virus for socioeconomic reasons. And the anti-smokers’ studies are all based on lifestyle questionnaires, so they’re cynically DESIGNED to blame tobacco for all those extra lung cancers that are really caused by HPV. And they commit the same type of fraud with every disease they blame on tobacco.

And, all their so-called “independent” reports were ring-led by the same guy, Jonathan M. Samet, including the Surgeon General Reports, the EPA report, the IARC report, and the ASHRAE report, and he’s now the chairman of the FDA Committee on Tobacco. He and his politically privileged clique exclude all the REAL scientists from their echo chamber. That’s how they make their reports “unanimous!”

For the government to commit fraud to deprive us of our liberties is automatically a violation of our Constitutional rights to the equal protection of the laws, just as much as if it purposely threw innocent people in prison. And for the government to spread lies about phony smoking dangers is terrorism, no different from calling in phony bomb threats.

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