CDC: Smoke-free laws increasing

Atlanta – The number of states enforcing indoor smoking bans increased to 26 in 2010, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2000, no state enforced smoke-free laws.

Smoke-free laws prohibit smoking in indoor areas such as worksites, restaurants and bars. In addition to the 26 states with comprehensive smoke-free laws, an additional 10 states have laws prohibiting smoking in one or two of the three venues included in the study, and eight states have less-restrictive smoking regulations, such as those that limit indoor smoking to designated areas.

The report indicated that regional disparities exist in enacting such laws, noting that currently no Southern state has passed a comprehensive smoke-free law.

Secondhand smoke exposure causes 46,000 deaths from heart disease and an additional 3,400 from lung cancer among non-smoking adults each year, the report noted.

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