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PA's Smoking Ban Should Filter Into Homes and Cars Too, According to Temple University Expert
Date:9/10/2008

PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On September 11, the Pennsylvania smoking ban will filter into public places.

"Now it is up to individuals and families to make their homes and cars smoke-free too," said Jennifer Ibrahim, Temple University assistant professor of public health."

Ibrahim was co-author of a recent report on smoking bans in Lancet Oncology from the International Agency for Research on Cancer.

She and her colleagues reviewed the global body of peer-reviewed published research and government reports regarding the health, economic and social impact of exposure to secondhand smoke.

They concluded:

-- Voluntary smoke-free home and car policies decrease exposure to secondhand smoke for children, as well as decrease adult smoking.

-- Despite arguments to the contrary, there is no evidence anywhere in the world to support claims regarding negative economic consequences of such a policy on the restaurant and bar industries.

-- There are significant health benefits to reducing exposure to secondhand smoke

-- There is good compliance and minimal opposition once a smoke-free policy has been passed.

Already a few states, including Maine, Massachusetts, and California, ban smoking in a car when a minor is present. Nationwide, there are at least 36 public housing authorities that have smoke-free public housing, following guidelines provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Smoke-free Homes and Cars Program (http://www.epa.gov/smokefree/).

"It is important to keep in mind that smoke-free policies are not prohibiting smokers from smoking. The policy is intended to protect the public from exposure to secondhand smoke. Period. Smokers may continue to smoke outside," said Ibrahim.

The full text of the article is available online at http://tinyurl.com/6fnyb9.

The full IARC report will be released at the World Conference on Tobacco or Health to be held in Mumbai, India in March 2009.


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SOURCE Temple University
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