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Institute of Medicine Report Concludes Smoke-Free Laws Prevent Heart Attacks; It's Time to Make All Workplaces and Public Places Smoke-Free
Date:10/15/2009

WASHINGTON, Oct. 15 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is a statement of Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids:

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080918/CFTFKLOGO)

A landmark report released today by the Institute of Medicine provides powerful new evidence that elected officials have no excuse for failing to enact comprehensive smoke-free workplace laws. The IOM report concludes smoke-free laws reduce the number of heart attacks and save lives. The report also confirms that there is conclusive scientific evidence that secondhand smoke causes heart disease, including heart attacks, and finds there is compelling evidence that even relatively brief exposure to secondhand smoke can lead to a heart attack.

These powerful conclusions, reached by one of the most prestigious scientific authorities in the United States, send a loud and clear message to elected officials across the U.S. and worldwide: No excuses, no half-measures. It's time to protect everyone's right to breathe clean air by enacting comprehensive smoke-free laws that include all workplaces and public places, including restaurants and bars. There should be no exceptions or loopholes. No one should have to put themselves at risk of a heart attack, lung cancer or the other serious diseases caused by secondhand smoke in order to earn a paycheck or enjoy a night out.

In the United States, 27 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have enacted smoke-free laws that include restaurants and bars. The new report should spur the remaining 23 states to enact comprehensive laws that include all workplaces, restaurants and bars (and all states to eliminate any exceptions that remain in their laws). This report should also spur countries around the world to enact comprehensive smoke-free laws in compliance with the Framework Convention on Tobacco
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SOURCE Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
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