As businesses and communities around California develop restrictions on exposure to
outdoor Second Hand Smoke (SHS), it is important to know there is scientific justification for policies banning smoking in outdoor areas. James Repace, well-
known researcher and scientific consultant on all types of environmental tobacco smoke,
asserts, “Not doing so may expose non-smokers to levels of environmental
tobacco smoke as high or higher than received in indoor spaces where smoking
is unrestricted." ("Banning Outdoor Smoking is Scientifically Justifiable." Tobacco
Control Digest, March 2000).
To answer the question of "how many feet should smoking be moved from a doorway",
Mr. Repace and other environmental tobacco smoke experts at the University of
California at Berkeley and the University of California at San Francisco came to a
consensus that 20 feet from a doorway would be adequate to provide protection from
the carcinogenic particulate in second hand smoke. Several cities and counties in
California have established entryway restrictions ranging from 20 to 50 feet.
SECOND HAND SMOKE: A PROVEN KILLER
? The Environmental Protection Agency categorizes SHS as a known human
carcinogen, placing it in the most dangerous category, reserved for substances
including radon, benzene, and asbestos.
? Secondhand Smoke (SHS) causes as many as 53,000 deaths each year in the 12United States, approximately 4,700 of which occur in California.
? The cost to California taxpayers from illnesses caused by tobacco use is
$6,000,000,000.00 (6 billion) annually.
SECOND HAND SMOKE IS AN OUTDOOR HAZARD
? Many nonsmokers exposed to outdoor tobacco smoke suffer immediate
symptoms including breathing difficulties, eye irritation, headache, nausea, and
? Individual cigarettes are sources of air pollution. Smoking in groups tends to
saturate a local area with tobacco smoke and exposes those who come into 3contact with it with high levels of airborne carcinogens.
? Failure to ban smoking in outdoor venues may expose nonsmokers to levels of
secondhand smoke as high or higher than received in indoor spaces where 4smoking is unrestricted.
SMOKE-FREE POLICIES REDUCE SMOKING
In addition to protecting public health, other positive results of smoke-free policies
include encouraging smokers to become nonsmokers; reducing the number of
cigarettes smoked by employees who continue to smoke; and helping former smokers 5remain smoke-free.
RIGHTS AND CHOICES
? U.S. and California Courts have repeatedly declared that there is no legal "right to
smoke" -- smoking is not a protected activity under the U.S. Constitution.
? Business owners and landlords in private industry, as well as
governmental agencies, have a legal right to establish reasonable safety
policies for their property, including no-smoking policies. To abide by such
a policy, a person who is smoking may refrain from smoking, step to an
unpopulated area to smoke or choose to become a nonsmoker. On the other
hand, a nonsmoker, a smoker who is trying to quit smoking, or parents with
children cannot avoid smoke-filled air at entrances of public and private buildings
where they do business.
A SELECTION OF CALIFORNIA COMMUNITIES AND BUSINESSES WITH
SUCCESSFUL SMOKE-FREE ENTRYWAY POLICIES
? San Mateo County Kaiser Permanente Medical Centers
Marin County University of CA, Davis, Medical Center
Madera County All California public school district offices
City of Davis and school campuses are tobacco-free
MODEL ENTRYWAY POLICY
"Smoking shall be prohibited within twenty (20) feet of all entrance(s), exit(s), open
windows, ventilation intake systems and covered entryways of any building owned or
leased by [City, County, Name]. All [City, County, Name] buildings will post "No
Smoking Within 20 Feet" signs outside of all entrance(s), exit(s), and ventilation intake
The experiences of communities, businesses and agencies throughout California who
have enacted outdoor smoking restrictions have shown that compliance is gained from
the presence of clear signage. In other words, these policies are, by and large, self-
enforcing where clear signage is visible.
1 Glantz, Stanton A. and William Pamley. U.C. San Francisco (1991). 2 California Environmental Protection Agency. Health Effects of Exposure to Environmental Tobacco Smoke. Washington (1997). 3 Repace, James. "Banning Outdoor Smoking is Scientifically Justifiable." Tobacco Control (March 2000). 4 Repace, James. "Banning Outdoor Smoking is Scientifically Justifiable." Tobacco Control (March 2000). 5 Moskowitz, Joel M.; Zihua Lin and Ester S. Hudes. "The Impact of Workplace Smoking Ordinances in California on Smoking
Cessation." American Journal of Public Health 90 (2000): 757-761.