We don’t normally think of January 2nd as an important holiday, but in North Carolina it is. January 2nd is the anniversary of our state’s smoke-free bar and restaurant law, which was signed into law in 2010. North Carolinians will be celebrating the third anniversary of the law this month, and there is a lot to celebrate!
The law has been good for business.
The state’s smoke-free law is incredibly popular amongst residents. According to a poll from Public Opinion Polls released this fall, 83% of voters support the law. Support of the law cuts across party lines, with 83% of Republicans in favor, as well as 77% of Independents and 86% of Democrats.
According to the North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association, “the smoking ban has had a positive impact on restaurant sales in North Carolina since its implementation. While some of our members were concerned initially about the impact on their business, most report sales have increased after the ban went into effect.” The smoke-free law creates a level playing field, and allows all restaurants in North Carolina to prosper.
Finally, and most importantly, the law has created a healthier North Carolina.
I don’t know about you, but this new year I’m thankful for our state’s smoke free law. When I got out to eat, I know longer have to be concerned that I’ll put my health at risk to enjoy a dinner with friends and family and I know waiters and bartenders won’t have to choose a paycheck over the health of their heart and lungs. I’ll be dining out this week at one of the many great restaurants in our state, and I’ll be telling my waiter how glad I am that all bars and restaurants are smoke-free. I hope you’ll join me!
Blog content provided be Lee Storrow, You’re the Cure volunteer.