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South Florida city Delray Beach has banned the hiring of employees who use tobacco products or smoke cigarettes. The ban is intended to save on insurance costs and promote a healthy lifestyle. City Commissioners made the policy, which refuses city agencies the right to hire anyone who has smoked a cigarette within the last year, official on October 2nd.
Delray Beach’s neighbour North Miami terminated a similar smoker ban several years ago after discovering it didn’t save money and prevented employee recruitment. Other local governments like Hollywood and Hallandale Beach have already implemented an anti-smoker employee law.
Smokers who already have jobs with the city will not lose them. Instead, they will have to pay higher insurance premiums. The ban will only affect new employees.
“Where do you draw the line? Smoking is a legal behaviour and there are a lot of other legal behaviours that cause risks to the population: drinking soda, eating fatty foods, consuming alcohol, sky diving,” Jay Wolfson, a constitutional attorney and University of South Florida professor of public health, told WPTV when asked about the ban.
[Via Huffington Post]
Claudia McNeilly is an editorial intern at the Toronto Standard. You can follow her on twitter at @claudiamcneilly