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Senate Panel Hears Testimony On Indiana Smoking Ban

Alice Curry of Columbus urged the Senate Public Policy Committee to remove the exemptions to protect workers from second-hand smoke. Curry is battling lung cancer. She never smoked but suspects her illness was caused by years of exposure to smoke in the workplace. Bar owners and the casino industry say a comprehensive ban would hurt business. Long term care facility operators want their residents to be able to smoke in designated areas.

An Indiana Senate committee heard testimony on a proposed statewide smoking ban that includes exemptions for casinos, bars and long-term care facilities such as nursing homes.

Alice Curry of Columbus urged the Senate Public Policy Committee to remove the exemptions to protect workers from second-hand smoke.

Curry is battling lung cancer. She never smoked but suspects her illness was caused by years of exposure to smoke in the workplace.

“By not passing a comprehensive clean air bill, you are giving me and thousands of other Hoosiers an early death sentence. I want you to stop that,” she said.

Bar owners and the casino industry say a comprehensive ban would hurt business. Long term care facility operators want their residents to be able to smoke in designated areas.

The committee will re-visit the measure next week. Some lawmakers say a smoking bill won’t win approval without exemptions.