The American Lung Association (ALA) recent graded California cities on their efforts to eliminate tobacco-caused death and disease, giving Dixon an “F” due to their lack of local smoking ban ordinances — but a poll of locals say that’s okay.
“Where do people smoke now? Not in anyplace I've been in,” says Carol Schnitter, while Randy Davis says, ”I'm not in favor of creating more laws that can't or won't be enforced."
A press release from the ALA stated that several municipalities in the Greater Bay Area are leading the state with new, strong tobacco control policies in 2013 in order to earn their “A” grading.
Marin County made world headlines in 2013, when San Rafael approved the toughest anti-smoking laws in the nation, prohibiting smokers from lighting up, not only in all public places, but also in all duplex and multi-family residential units that share a common wall. Marin residents were already banned from smoking on downtown sidewalks and local parks.
Berkeley joined Albany, Dublin, Union City, Richmond, Contra Costa County, and Santa Clara County, in addition, the cities of Walnut Creek, Daly City, Monterey, Hillsborough, Lafayette, and San Ramon passing strong policies. San Francisco and Oakland, the two most populous cities in the region, received overall B grades for their tobacco control policies.
Dixon received its failing grade due to a complete lack of tobacco control laws; with the possibility of earning 12 points for overall tobacco control, smoke-free outdoor air, smoke-free housing, and reduction of tobacco product sales, Dixon earned zero.
However, consensus among commenters eluded that although smoking is not healthy, local legislation isn’t desired.
Steve Freitas expressed, “Individual choice and freedoms trump nanny laws every time.”
Solano County saw an average of 181 lung cancer related deaths annual from 2009- 2011, an average of 47 deaths per 100,000 population, above the state average of 38.
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death and the second most common cancer among both men and women in the United States, killing 87,260 men and 72,220 women in 2013, more than double the number of breast (39,620) and prostate cancer (29,720).
In conjunction with the national report, the American Lung Association in California released its State of Tobacco Control 2014 – California Local Grades, which issues grades for all 482 cities and 58 counties in California on local tobacco control policies. To view the complete California report, including grades for cities and counties in the Greater Bay Area, visit www.lung.org/california
Tell us what you think. Legislation or personal choice? Do smokers have an equal right to smoke as non-smokers have an equal right to breathe smoke free air?