AMERICAN NONSMOKERS RIGHTS FOUNDATION

Educating the Industry About the Hazards of Secondhand Smoke

Responsible gaming… The health and safety of our employees is our No. 1 priority… Providing the most enjoyable entertainment experience for all our customers.

These are phrases expressed by some of America’s largest, most successful gaming establishments. But what do they really mean?

For many Americans, especially the hospitality gaming workforce, these phrases can ring hollow and insincere in a smoke-filled venue. However, over time, more gaming establishments are living up to these lofty goals—while being wildly successful and 100 percent smoke-free indoors. Sometimes it’s just as simple as adding an outdoor smoking patio off the gaming floor.

Today, more than 800 casinos and other U.S. gaming venues are smoke-free. But the casino hospitality workforce still is the most exposed to secondhand smoke compared to any other job sector. It’s a major public health and safety problem for gaming host communities, industry leaders and anyone who has to breathe inside a casino complex.

Reliable studies continue to show exposure to secondhand smoke increases the risk of heart disease 25 percent-30 percent. It also increases risk of cancer and stroke 20 percent-30 percent and causes respiratory diseases like COPD, chronic bronchitis and asthma.

The science is clear that casino HVAC systems, smoking rooms and smoking sections do not protect people from the health hazards of secondhand smoke. Even low levels of secondhand smoke still pose significant health risks, particularly to the cardiovascular system.

More than 87 percent of the U.S. population are nonsmokers, including four out of five casino-goers and the vast majority of millennials. To find out more, talk to an ANR representative during G2E or visit smokefreecasinos.org.

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