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Survey of businesses says 73% want Kenmare to be smoke-free

Members of the Kenmare Tobacco-Free Coalition were encouraged by the response to a survey of Kenmare Association of Commerce members about support for a community smoke-free ordinance.

8/17/11 (Wed)

 

Members of the Kenmare Tobacco-Free Coalition were encouraged by the response to a survey of Kenmare Association of Commerce members about support for a community smoke-free ordinance.

 

With 34 surveys returned from Association of Commerce members, 73 percent of the respondents indicated they would support the Kenmare City Council implementing a 100 percent smoke free indoor air law to eliminate secondhand smoke in all indoor public places including bars.

 

The survey included space for comments, which showed a range of opinions on the topic, from “I think it should be a vote of the people, not the council” and “Too intrusive” to “We have been smoke-free for several years at my store. Would love to see the bars go smoke-free.” and “It may not be popular but most everyone knows it is the right thing to do. I would likely visit the area bars more often.”

 

Melissa Burud, First District Health Unit Public Health Nurse who advises the Kenmare Coalition, pointed out that from a health care perspective, business owners have a legal responsibility to provide a safe working environment for their employees. “And that includes air quality,” she said.

 

“There’s an emphasis on clean air for patrons, too,” added Holly Brekhus, FDHU Tobacco Prevention Community Outreach Coordinator. “If you’re a business owner and you let people into your establishment, they have the right to breathe clean air.”

 

Coalition members decided to send letters to Association of Commerce members informing them of the survey results and thanking them for their participation.

 

Three young artists were declared winners in the SmokeFree Community Poster contest. Jeneca Kostad’s poster won the age 8-10 division, while McKayla Neubauer’s poster was best in the age 11-13 division, and Linda Yang’s poster in the age 14-17 division.

 

Copies of the winning posters will be displayed around Kenmare and available for viewing later on the SmokeFree Kenmare page at www.facebook.com.

 

The Kenmare Tobacco-Free Coalition also received more resolutions of support for a city council-enacted smokefree ordinance from the Kenmare Dental Clinic, the Kenmare Community Hospital advisory board, and Thompson-Larson Funeral Home.

 

The next meeting of the Kenmare Tobacco-Free Coalition will be held Tuesday, September 13, 2011, at 12 noon at the Kenmare Branch Library.

 

Anyone interested in seeing Kenmare become the next community in North Dakota to go smoke-free is welcome to attend. For more information, contact Pauline Nielsen at 701-385-4907 or Barb Scherbenske at 701-385-4412.