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Leading Health Groups Applaud Continued Efforts to Protect Public Health by Ending So-Called 'Theatrical Productions' in Bars
Date:3/14/2008

MINNEAPOLIS, March 14 /PRNewswire/ -- As the state's leading health groups working to reduce the death and disease caused by tobacco in Minnesota, we applaud continued efforts to enforce the Freedom to Breathe Act by ending so-called "theatrical productions" in bars.

"Yesterday's actions by the City of Maplewood are a positive step toward preserving the integrity of the smoke-free law and we congratulate their efforts to protect health," said Pat McKone, Director of Tobacco Control Programs and Policy for the American Lung Association of Minnesota.

In a statement issued last week, The Minnesota Department of Health clearly stated that so-called "theatrical productions" in bars are a violation of the Freedom to Breathe Act. "We are encouraged that bar owners are putting an end to these theatrical stunts and will no longer be placing the health of their patrons and employees at risk," said David Arons, the American Cancer Society's Director of Government Relations.

A recent survey by ClearWay Minnesota found that 76 percent of Minnesotans support the smoke-free law. "This issue was thoroughly debated last year and the Legislature, the Governor and the public all decided in favor of public health," said David Willoughby, Chief Executive Officer of ClearWay Minnesota.

ClearWay Minnesota(SM) is an independent, non-profit organization that improves the health of Minnesotans by reducing the harm caused by tobacco. ClearWay Minnesota serves Minnesota through its grant-making program, through QUITPLAN(R) Services and through statewide outreach activities. It is funded with 3 percent of the state's 1998 tobacco settlement.

For more information on QUITPLAN Services, call 952-767-1400 or visit http://www.clearwaymn.org.

The American Cancer Society is dedicated to eliminating cancer as a major health problem by saving lives, diminishing suffering and preventing cancer through research, education, advocacy and service. Founded in 1913 and with national headquarters in Atlanta, the Society has 13 regional Divisions and local offices in 3,400 communities, involving millions of volunteers across the United States. For more information anytime, call toll free 1.800.ACS.2345 or visit http://www.cancer.org.

The American Lung Association of Minnesota (ALAM), serving Minnesotans since 1903, is one of the oldest non-profit voluntary health organizations in the nation. ALAM provides advocacy, research, education and programs to promote healthy air, healthy people and healthy lungs. Key areas of focus include: outdoor and indoor air quality, asthma management, smoking prevention and cessation, flu and pneumonia immunization, and lung disease management. For more information, please call 1(800) LUNG-USA or visit us at our website at http://www.lungmn.org.


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SOURCE ClearWay Minnesota
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