Posted by: audreybenenati | December 1, 2009

Don’t smoke at community events

Oneida Dispatch-Thursday, November 26, 2009
Mid-York Weekly-Thursday, December 3, 2009

By Abigail Simchik, Prevention Education Specialist
BRiDGES, Canastota

To The Editor:

‘Tis the Season for holiday gatherings and community events. There are local tree lighting ceremonies scheduled throughout the county within the next few weeks.

Secondhand smoke causes immediate harm to the heart and blood vessels, and no level of exposure is safe.

Some research suggests that secondhand smoke exposure in outdoor areas is similar to effects of inhaling secondhand smoke from an individual who is smoking inside a bar.

While the passage of the clean indoor air act has prohibited smoking in public places such as restaurants, health care facilities and places of employment, tobacco prevention programs continue to work with municipalities regarding smoking policies at local parks, playgrounds and beaches.

It is imperative that the community is aware of the dangers of secondhand smoke and that support is gained from community members to make local events smoke-free.

Tree-lighting ceremonies are usually well attended by members of the community, including many families with children. The U.S. Environment Protection Agency has classified secondhand smoke as a Group A carcinogen. By supporting smoke-free events in your local community you are protecting members of the community from the dangers of secondhand smoke while also promoting a healthier lifestyle and clean environment.

Cigarettes are among the most littered items in world.

Help keep your community clean by supporting smoke-free local events while promoting healthy living for you and your loved ones. For more information and smoke-free signs for your venue, go to


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