I realize this may be a pretty inane question; but do any offices of tobacco companies have a ‘smoke free’ policy?
I am not easily finding anything via Google, although I did find an article from 2005 about a state-wide smoke-free policy in Georgia that provided an exemption to the corporate offices of tobacco companies.
If not smoke-free; Way back I thought that smoking was actually formally or informally expected of employees of tobacco companies - is that still the case?
I can’t answer directly, but … If you watch Mad Men, they sure smoke a lot on that show. But they’re not smoking tobacco as cigarettes are banned in the work place in California. It probably is similar in the majority of states. North Carolina has it only banned in enclosed restaurants and bars. I can’t answer for tobacco companies in that state, for example. http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/workplace-smoking-laws-your-state-46877.html
I worked for a while in the London HQ of one, both before and after the UK smoking ban. Before, most offices seemed to allow smoking, but there weren’t a lot of people doing so at any time. All the meeting rooms had a stack of ashtrays and matchbooks in the corner, but not out on the desks. I’d been led to expect people smoking through meetings (and actually had refused the project at first because I was pregnant) but that didn’t seem to happen.
After the ban, the situation was similar, although nobody smoked in the building. The ashtrays and matches were still there, with an invitation to take them to the smoking garden on the roof.
Incidentally, the HQ building is stunning and clearly represents an enormous amount of money.
Wikipedia has a page addressing state smoking laws, and it mentions, for instance, that Virginia’s ban on smoking in the workplace excludes tobacco manufacturing facilities. It does not indicate whether any such companies impose such a ban of their own initiative.
I may be ranging into Bricker territory, but I think that smoking cigarettes in the context of an artistic production would be protected by the First Amendment, which would override any state smoking prohibitions.
The point was that tobacco companies probably have a smoke free workplace not because of company policy but because of state laws. This would not apply to North Carolina as a substantial part of the NC economy is derived from smoking.
Anecdotal, but a friend of mine works for Altria (aka Philip Morris - makers of Marlboro, among others) at their headquarters here in the city and can confirm that there are, in fact, smoking lounges in the building. Note that he works in IT and not with the actual production of cigarettes, so the areas he describes would be located in one of their offices, which may or may not be included in one’s definition of a “tobacco manufacturing facility.” It’s likely that the company itself is granted an exemption by the state of Virginia and that it applies to all of their facilities, which is still notable because I’ve never seen another workplace with the same setup (although I’m young enough that I was a kid when adults lost the “right” to smoke in restaurants here in the Commonwealth).
For what it’s worth, he’s never seen anyone smoking in an interior location that was not one of these lounges/break areas, but whether that’s a hard-and-fast company rule against smoking in non-approved areas, or just common courtesy, he’s not sure.
I definitely have a mental picture of the door to a conference room opening and smoke billowing out, though… or some exec with his feet up on the desk and a stogie between his teeth.
Most such laws have an exemption for “performances”, so an actor smoking on stage is not a violation. Some bars in Minnesota tried to they were having amateur night events, and that everyone was a performer, so they could legally smoke inside the bar. It didn’t work.
California allows an awful lot in the name of art (most of the US’s professional porn is produced there, for instance), but I wouldn’t be surprised if the existence of non-tobacco cigarettes is used as a justification for not allowing tobacco cigs. You can get the same artistic effect from an herbal cigarette, therefore tobacco isn’t necessary for the art, therefore it’s not exempted.
Illinois’s smoking ban does not exempt theatrical productions. There was quite a bit of kerfuffle about it in the Chicago theater community at the time (2008), but the theaters eventually adjusted to the ban by using prop cigarettes (Cecil has an article about them).
I recall that a lot of people (including the Chicago Tribune’s theater critic) claimed that the First Amendment overrode the state law. The law was unsuccessfully challenged in the courts, but I don’t believe any of those challenges came from theaters. Most theatrical companies are hanging on by their fingernails and can’t afford to pay attorneys for quixotic legal crusades.
Speaking as someone who was once heavily involved in theater, I think the whole First Amendment argument was a red herring. The real reason there’s so much smoking in plays is that most actors are heavy smokers. They can’t go 20 minutes without a cigarette, so they say, “I’ve decided that my character smokes” and light up on stage. A few of my actor friends were so angry about the Illinois law that they vowed never to perform in a theater that complied with the ban. Needless to say, they didn’t stick to that. Now, when you exit a Chicago theater after a play, you’ll find that the actors are already outside on the sidewalk puffing away.
Included there is the exemption for tobacco manufacturers and the like. Most interesting is that one of my favorite haunts permits indoor smoking after 10pm - with no designated areas or anything. One door in, more or less one big room (with the bar of course) - and when the clock strikes 10 it’s okay to light up. Maybe grandfathered in - there does seem to be a lot of different applications of the general VA law.
Smokers in the UK are fast becoming pariahs. They are not allowed to smoke in pretty much any enclosed place that anyone else has access to, including vehicles. There has been some controversy about disabled people smoking at home because they have health assistants visiting.
Light up in the street and you will be glared at. Cigarettes are only available under the counter - no display is permitted, and no advertising - anywhere… As well as all that they are heavily taxed, making a pack of 20 around £7 ($10).
Here’s another person being sued for smoking in her yard (and this isn’t even the case I was looking for).
In the one I was thinking of, it was the defendant’s son who smoked, bu only when he visited. He smoked in the yard because the parents would not let him smoke indoors.
In 1980, it was still legal to smoke in San Francisco movie theaters - in the loge (which looked a lot like a balcony, but much deeper). That didn’t last.
When a (historically) open town like SF tells you to quit, you know it’s serious. There for a while, you could walk 30’ from the office door and smoke (SF requires a % of a lot to be open to the public, so there is plenty of space). Last I heard, even that was bieng taken away.