Saturday, November 05, 2011

Providence Hospital says no butts about no smoking for employees

Trying to be a smoker in today's world is getting harder and harder. There once was a time when it was glamorous to sit in a bar room with a cigarette in hand, smoke swirling about just above everyone's heads, but times have changed.

Not only have the steadily increasing taxes on tobacco products made cheap cigars all but a thing of the past, but now some businesses no longer hire people if they smoke.

Providence Hospital in Anchorage Alaska has become one of he latest private businesses to stop hiring tobacco users. On November 17th, Providence Hospital will begin testing prospective employees for not only illegal drugs, but for nicotine use as well.

Providence is not the first Alaska business to go smoke free for their employees. Alaska Airlines was quick to stop hiring smokers, initiating a no smoking hiring rule in the 1980s in states that would allow it - including Alaska.

Providence Hospital selected November 17th to coincide with the American Cancer Society's Great American Smokeout that encourages people to stop smoking.

I suppose I am in a quickly dwindling segment that misses the old smoke-filled bar rooms and nightclubs. Or I am just an old gal that supported my parents' right to smoke after it was the US Government that got them started with smokes in the MREs. Smoking might be bad for your health, but I saw a poster years ago in a doctor's office that noted only about .03% of the population had the chance to maybe get cancer from smoking. I don't know.

It just seems like it might be better for all the stop smoking ad money to be spent on finding a cure for cancer rather than on harassing old timers that just want to sit back in a dark smoke filled room and talk about the good old days with their friends one more time.