Thursday, March 4, 2010

Recent letter to the editor

Letter to the editor: Clear the air

By Margaret Aycock, Tulsa

Published: 2/28/2010 5:21 AM

Last Modified: 2/28/2010 5:21 AM

The danger from breathing second-hand smoke is such common knowledge that most elementary children are aware of it. Are we not smarter than a fifth-grader?

The Oklahoma Tobacco Research Center recently completed a study that shows the air in our bars and clubs is "extremely hazardous and far exceeds Environmental Protection Agency air quality standards." Must we wait until complaints are called into the EPA and entire businesses are closed before our legislators mandate clean air in all workplaces?

It is troubling to me that the tobacco lobby and restaurant association lobby have more sway with legislators than health organizations that are begging for smoke-free legislation. Legislators tell me that some restaurants and bar owners who spent money to install separate smoking rooms and ventilation feel that it is an unfair burden on them. Are our legislators worried about looking bad? "Oops, we were wrong about those smoking rooms being a good idea."

Smoking must be discontinued in the workplace even though someone invested in ventilation or a new room. Remember, they still get to keep the rooms, and new studies show that ventilation is just not good enough to clear the air of carcinogens.

As far as having a negative impact on business is concerned, the figures prove otherwise in states and countries where similar laws were enacted.

We need legislation that will protect both workers and patrons and we need it now.

Feel free to go to and type in margaret aycock, follow the thread to this letter and post your own comments to the world

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