Muscatine County considers smoking ban for new employees
The Muscatine County Board of Supervisors has recently considered the shift from a smoke-free to a smoker-free workplace.Read more
#1 Oct 5, 2011
There are many public sector employers who already do not employ smokers. Adding this one to the list is still news, but not so much so as it would have been a decade ago.
I notice that the writer (who closes by soft-pedaling the "slippery slope" plank of the tobacco industry's position) hits continually on the "smoking/tobacco is legal" premise. This is a clear case of biased reporting, however subtle the manipulation involved may be.
While mentioning that there are many state laws that can be construed as against refusing to hire smokers, the writer fails to touch on the fact that firing employees who show up for work smelling like tobacco is not so widely frowned on.
Denying an employer the right to use smoking as a hiring criteria when smelling like smoke is an acceptable firing criteria simply means that the employer is required to go to the expense and trouble of hiring people for half a shift in order to apply their true criteria for hiring.
Those state laws will probably change over time to make it clear that they should NOT be interpreted as including smoking.
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