Kenmare Tobacco-Free Coalition gaining support in the community
Posted 7/05/11 (Tue)
By Caroline Downs
A handful of organizations have already signed a resolution of support for efforts by the Kenmare Tobacco-Free Coalition to encourage the Kenmare City Council to implement a smoke-free public places ordinance for the community.
To date, the Kenmare Coalition has received resolutions and letters from the Kenmare PTA, P.E.O. Chapter L, First District Health Unit, two local women’s coffee groups, and the American Lung Association. Members of the Coalition will be talking to representatives from more community organizations, seeking additional support.
Members of the Kenmare Coalition will be meeting with the Kenmare Association of Commerce in July regarding to a survey that will be sent to all Association members regarding their support for a smoke-free ordinance that could be enacted by the Kenmare City Council. Those survey results will be available by early August.
The Coalition is also sponsoring a sponsoring a Smoke-Free Community poster contest for youth in the Kenmare and the surrounding area. Children and teens are being asked to create an original poster reflecting the benefits of a smoke-free community or the harmful effects of exposure to secondhand smoke. Prizes will be given out for first, second, and third place winners.
Posters will be displayed at various locations in Kenmare. Registration forms and all contest rules are available at the Kenmare Public Library.
The Kenmare Tobacco-Free Coalition organized in April to support statewide efforts to end exposure to secondhand smoke for workers and customers in public places. With a law passed in 2005, the state of North Dakota prohibited smoking in public places but allowed an exemption for bars, truck stops and other specified entities.
Since that legislation was enacted, several cities, including Grand Forks, Fargo, Bismarck, Pembina, Napoleon and West Fargo, have passed ordinances to completely end smoking in public places. As of Friday, July 1st, the city of Devils Lake went smoke-free, with the city commission approving an ordinance to do so.
The next meeting of the Kenmare Tobacco-Free Coalition will be Monday, July 11th, at the FDHU office on the east side square, beginning at 2:30 pm. All interested persons are welcome to attend.
For more information about the Kenmare Tobacco Free Coalition, contact Pauline Nielsen at 385-4907 or Barb Scherbenske at 385-4412.