No Smoking Legislation

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No Smoking Legislation

Introduction

No smoking legislation is a policy aiming at banning smoking at open public environment. Various countries have taken the initiative to ban public smoking among their citizens; the core reason for the ban is to reduce health risk associated with both active and passive smoking. The law or legislative makes it be an offence in smoking at public places. Because of the ban legislation, different premises or places are supposed to flaunt a no smoking display in order to inform citizens that smoking is prohibited in that locality or the premises. Some of the premises affected with the veto include offices, bars, factories, shops, hotels, restaurants, casinos, clubs, dance hall, sport centers, petrol stations, and transport systems or public vehicles. The designated locations for the display have similar characteristics, they all hold large number of persons. The legislation has some exceptions to the particular business premises; the law allows the businesses to designate or allocate enclosed regions, where their customers can smoke. No smoking legislation is effective in reducing health problems in the population. Different countries globally have adopted the legislation after carrying out the corresponding researches (Carter, 2012).

Past and Current Cases related to Ban

There have been many cases that evolved after execution of no smoking in public policy, which are both positive and negative. On the past cases, after public ban, there was court petition at Ohio to stop implementation of the law. People, who filed the petition, were citizens and other business personalities. For the business owners, they filled their petition citing that the law was invading on the business property rights; hence, affecting their ability to generate income (Ahn, 2012). After implementation of the law, there has been imposition of fine to the public and private premises that violate the act. Many businesses have been taken to court after failing to abide to the law. In some of the past cases, where bars at Ohio failed to respect the laws and did not put the “No Smoking” posters, they allowed its clients to smoke in public. The magistrate fined the bars showing examples to other businesses to abide to the provided decree.

After the attainment of ban in the several parts of the world, the countries have gone further to abolish or prohibit advertisement of tobacco products. Some countries prohibited Tobacco Company to sponsor any sporting events. The ban of sponsorship and advertisement in the European Union (EU) in the year 2005, impelled Formula One management to find other ways, which would allow displaying of the livery or racing color of tobacco sponsorship (Gilleskie, Strumpf, 2000). These later led to some of the scheduled races to be cancelled in the favor of a more friendly tobacco market. In the year 2007, after prohibition of sponsorship, only one team, the Scuderia Ferrari received sponsorship from Tobacco Company. Other teams sought sponsorship from other companies; Marlboro turn to be the major backer, as it sponsored two teams. By the year 2012, despite the prohibition by the European Union on advertisement, there were still large billboards in Germany advertising tobacco products. In the year 2009, Ireland followed the EU instruction on prohibition, as they banned display and advertisement of tobacco products at the retail stores. This implie that stores will hoard tobacco products in the closed areas, where they cannot be viewed (Ahn, 2012).

On current cases or current development related to the no smoking legislation, there has been criticism among citizens and business fraternity on implementation of the law. There has been several activist, who have criticized the government’s involvement and interference of individual’s lifestyle. This group of individuals claimed that the law was misguiding. Their arguments are based on the interpretation of harms principle by John Mill. They perceive or view the law as the hindrance to the consumption of tobacco, rather than affecting or harming other persons. According to the property rights, some sections of citizen and business people challenged the government by drawing division between private or individual owned premises and public environment. They believed that government should allow citizens to run their business freely within their properties.

After the ban of smoking in public was attained, different countries have gone ahead to ban smoking tobacco product in their state. In 2012, Bhutan was the first nation to abolish harvesting, sale, and production of tobacco products. The Pitcairn also banned sale of tobacco and illegalized tobacco smoking within country’s boarders. Currently, New Zealand is working hard to attain the status of tobacco-free country by the year 2025. In Finland, in 2012, anti-smoking groups lobbied for licensing of smokers. They stated that smokers had to be given a license to smoke, and after they have decided to quit, their licenses would be taken back. In the same year, Brazil’s government became the first to abolish flavored tobacco products in the market including menthols; it then banned the use of 600 additives in cigarettes and allowed to use only eight additives, which are not harmful (Gilleskie, Strumpf, 2000).

Current Public Perspective on the Ban

According to Gallup poll, they found that 54% of the American citizens were advocating no smoking in restaurants, and any other public places. About 34% of the public wanted no smoking in hotels, and 29% wanted no smoking in streets and congested regions. In the same poll, about 27% of the American citizens were against the ‘No smoking’ legislation due to the various reasons. According to the survey, which involved over 26500 Europeans, they found that majority of the sampled population were supporting the abolishment of tobacco smoking in the public places such as restaurants, hotels, bars, offices, public vehicles, and institutions. The poll further indicated that majority of citizens feel that abolishment in working environment is more active than at bars and restaurants. Countries that have implemented the legislation enjoy major support from its citizens. On the aspects of displaying ‘No smoking’ notice in the public places, about 87% of the population supported it, while minority believes it should be a self-driven initiative.

Public opinion regarding fines imposed to those, violating the law states that about 78% of the population believed that fines would enable smokers and business fraternities to respect and abide to the stipulated laws. A group named “anti smoking” voices concerns of the majority citizens; the group states that public smoking has harmful health effects to the populace. The group stated that theree are economic and health benefits because of the ban; they explained that there was a drop in hospitals admission related to heart attacks and asthmatic attacks. They supposed that the decline or drop in this admission in hospitals is attributed to the ban in public smoking of tobacco products (Gilleskie, Strumpf, 2000).

Causes and Effect of Smoking

Causes of smoking have been attributed with peer pressure and environment of an individual. Majority of smokers started smoking during their teenage, because of peer pressure. Most young people started smoking slowly and continuously it became their habit or addiction. Some individuals at their adulthood imitated the people they viewed as their role models; hence, emulating them in smoking leading to addiction (Gilleskie, Strumpf, 2000). On the other hand, addiction or a cause of smoking is due to the individuals surrounding or environment. If an individual lives in the environment, where tobacco smoking is not a big deal, or the entire community acknowledges smoking, it will influence people around to start smoking; hence, leading to the habit or addiction (Evaluate the implementation of the smoking ban, 2012).

Addiction to smoking remains to be the leading cause of illnesses and deaths in the population globally. In America, it is estimated that about 440,000 people die because of illnesses or diseases associated with cigarette smoking, which accounts for about one-fifth of every deaths that occur in state (Gilleskie, Strumpf, 2000). Comparing smokers and non-smokers, smokers are fourteen times at higher risk of dying of cancer of throat, mouth, and lungs. They are also two times at higher risk of dying of the heart problems. Illnesses and conditions associated with smoking include heart diseases, stroke, hypertension, lung cancer, bronchitis, emphysema, pneumonia, peptic ulcer disease, burns, and cervical cancer.

Smoking has psychological effect to smokers; the main psychological problem associated with smoking is depression. Smokers believe that through smoking they get “high feelings” or good feelings (Shephard, 2004). Their body will then start craving for high feelings, for this reason, end up depending on this chemicals for their survival and better functioning. If they fail to get sufficient chemical or are not able smoke enough, they will end up being depressed. Therefore, the body will be used to feeling high, and the smokers will have to retain this state leading to addiction. With smoke ban at public places, it will reduce psychological effects to individuals.

Conclusion

No smoking legislation or smoking ban in public places aims at promoting health of the population. Because of the ban, business premises are supposed to display “No Smoking” sign to inform their customers that it is illegal to smoke in those places. Some of the affected regions or premises include shops, restaurants, bars, offices, public vehicles, and streets. The ban has health and economic benefits to citizens. Admission in hospitals reduced, as most children and passive smokers were not affected. On economical benefits, most non-smokers could be able to visit restaurants and bars with no fear of being affected by smoke. Major health problems associated with both passive and active smoking include lung cancer, stroke, hypertension, and asthmatic attacks.

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