Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Rally On Monday

On Monday, November 30th, at 7:00 p.m. the Indianapolis-Marion County City-County Council will vote on Proposal 371 at the City County Building's Public Assembly Room. We are asking all supporters to attend the council meeting as a way to show support for making Indy smoke free. We are also asking all supporters to wear their green Smoke Free Indy t-shirt as a way to show unity for smoke free air.

Before the council vote we will be having a rally in support of smoke free air at the Indianapolis City Market.
When: Monday, November 30th
Time: 5:00 p.m.
Where: Indianapolis City Market - West Plaza, 222 E. Market St, Indianapolis, IN 46204
Why: To get revved up about Indianapolis going smoke free!

Thanks to everyone for their work thus far. We couldn't have gotten this close without your help.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

ACS' Great American Smokeout

Tomorrow is the American Cancer Society's Great American Smokeout, a day dedicated to quitting the tobacco habit. In honor of this day Smoke Free Indy will be throughout the city educating the public about secondhand smoke and sharing resources on quitting smoking.

If you would like to quit smoking you can call 1-800-Quit-Now the free Indiana counseling line which will send you 2 weeks of free patch or gum by signing up, or you can visit our cessation page for local resources.

Tomorrow can be the first day of your life as a NONSMOKER! You can do it, I know it!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Who We Are: In Response to Recent Inquiries

Smoke Free Indy is a coalition of state and local public health organizations, community based organizations, physicians, businesses, schools, the faith community, and Marion County residents dedicated to reducing secondhand smoke, tobacco usage and tobacco initiation through education, prevention and advocacy. Our coalition membership includes many state, local and national organizations, including but not limited to the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, and American Lung Association of Indiana. For a complete list of Smoke Free Indy’s coalition partners, please visit

The organizations that are partners in Smoke Free Indy are committed to the principles of the coalition at the direction of their own governing bodies and donors. Our partner organizations are in compliance with local, state and federal laws. Smoke Free Indy does not receive federal funds and therefore is not in violation of the Hatch Act, as has been suggested.

Internal tobacco industry documents now available to us show clearly that one of the key tactics the tobacco industry uses to undermine effective policy change is to make false claims of illegal political activity or lobbying so they can smear a tobacco-free coalition's efforts. More information can be found here:

Smoke Free Indy remains focused on the health of Indianapolis workers and we are hopeful that the City-County Council will continue to work to protect all workers in Indianapolis from the dangers of secondhand smoke.

Hoosiers burned in smoke study | | The Indianapolis Star

Hoosiers burned in smoke study | | The Indianapolis Star

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State outpuffs most of nation | | The Indianapolis Star

Smoking rate now No. 2 in the country

State outpuffs most of nation | | The Indianapolis Star

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Friday, November 13, 2009

USA Today Article on CDC Prevalence Data Featuring a Photo from Indianapolis

Literally the poster child…

Below is a link to a story from USA Today about the CDC release of the national prevalence data. The photo that accompanied the USA Today story was of a person smoking inside the Red Key Tavern in Indianapolis.

To effectively reduce smoking prevalence, three proven policy solutions that work synergistically together are : 1) comprehensive smoke free workplace laws, 2) increase in the price of tobacco products, and 3) adequate funding for a state’s tobacco prevention and cessation program.

Indianapolis has an opportunity to address one of those three on Monday, November 30th when the City-County Council considers Proposal 371, a comprehensive smoke free workplace ordinance that includes, bars, bowling alleys and clubs.

USA Today: Adult smoking rate rises slightly for 1st time in 15 years

By Darron Cummings, AP

A customer at the Red Key Taven in Indianapolis lights a Marlboro cigarette.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Morty's Comedy Hypnotist Show

Smoke Free Indy would like to invite you to join us for this fun filled, smoke free event.

Procedural Victories Keep Proposal 371 Alive for Consideration

Thanks to some very adept procedural maneuvering at yesterday’s council meeting in Indianapolis, Proposal 371 — which would make workplaces, including bars, bowling alleys and clubs, smoke free — was taken off the table and it’s now on the agenda for consideration by the City-County Council at the November 30th meeting. See the Indy Star story below for details. | Stronger smoking ban gets new life | The Indianapolis Star

Monday, November 9, 2009

Indy Star: 10 percent of lung cancer patients never smoked

Check out this article on Indy Star:

10 percent of lung cancer patients never smoked

According to Dr. Nasser Hanna, an associate professor of hematology/oncology at the Indiana University School of Medicine and a physician-researcher with the I.U. Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center, 10 percent of lung cancer patients are non-smokers.

"Exposure to second-hand smoke and such long-term occupational risks as working in factories and coal mines put non-smokers at increased risk."

Monday, November 2, 2009

Fun Fact: Libertarian Party of IN Violates its Own Stated Purpose/Principles in Opposing Smoke Free Laws

The Libertarian Party of Indiana violates its own stated principles articulated in its by-laws with its position opposing comprehensive smoke free workplace laws that protects all workers.

Check out this portion of the LPIN bylaws from the organization’s website below [the highlighting is my addition]:

Libertarian Party of Indiana -- By-Laws


Section 2. Principles. The LPIN affirms the following principles:

a. That all people possess certain unalienable natural rights, and that among these are rights to life, liberty, justly acquired property, and self-governance.

b. That the only moral basis of government is the preservation and protection of unalienable natural rights.

c. That no person or institution, public or private, has the right to initiate the use of physical force or fraud against another person, and that all people are bound, without contract, to abstain from infringing upon the natural rights of other people.

[Approved at State Convention May 1999; As Amended at State Convention April 2001; As Amended at State Convention April 2004; As Amended by Central Committee October 2005; As Amended at State Convention April 2006]

The Libertarian Party of Indiana chooses to defend the last two inalienable rights listed under Article II, Section 2 a—property rights and self-governance—at the expense of the first two inalienable rights –LIFE and LIBERTY. Secondhand smoke is a cause of death, and to defend the status quo where workers continue to health their health jeopardized by exposure to secondhand smoke, the LPIN threatens those workers’ rights to life and liberty. Not only is the health of workers seriously threatened by secondhand smoke [infringing on the inalienable right to life], but it also infringes on when secondhand smoke is present in the air because it takes away everyone’s liberty to breathe air free of secondhand smoke.

But really, the most egregious betrayal of the LPIN’s own principles and purpose by opposing comprehensive smoke free workplace laws is made clear in Article II, Section 2[c]. Libertarians say one key principle is that “all people are bound, without contract, to abstain from infringing upon the natural rights of other people.” Unfortunately, by opposing comprehensive smoke free workplace ordinances, Indiana’s Libertarians were active parties to ensuring that some people will continue to infringe upon the natural rights of other people [continuing to smoke inside an enclosed workplace or enclosed public place and risking the life and liberty of those occupants].

Normally, I wouldn’t spend time analyzing the bylaws of a 2% fringe political party, but since they have inserted themselves so visibly and vocally into the dialogue about whether Indianapolis should protect all workers from a known and preventable occupational health risk, I thought it would be worthwhile to see what they’re supposed to be about. It looks like they’re about picking and choosing which inalienable natural rights they want to defend and which ones they think it’s okay to trample on.

Just FYI…

Halloween Treats: Two Great Editorials

Almost two years after Candidate Ballard said in 2007 he would support any legislation to limit the impact of secondhand smoke, and after months of not offering a public position, Mayor Ballard came in quietly behind-the-scenes to ask for defeat of this common sense smoke free workplace proposal.

We can thank our well-informed and engaged media here in Indianapolis for covering this issue in-depth and for helping illuminate Mayor Ballard’s position on Proposal 371.

Ban goes down in flames of secrecy | | The Indianapolis Star

Take the lead, Mayor Ballard | | The Indianapolis Business Journal

Why Indy's behind the pack | | The Indianapolis Star

Why Indy's behind the pack | | The Indianapolis Star

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The Ballard Weighs In On Smoking Ban Debate

Ballard Weighs In On Smoking Ban Debate
Mayor: Debate Should 'Concentrate On Health'

POSTED: 7:45 am EDT October 30, 2009

INDIANAPOLIS -- Just days after a controversial comprehensive smoking ban was voted down in the City-County Council, Mayor Greg Ballard weighed in on why he didn't actively support the ban.

When he ran for office, Ballard said he would support a smoking ban, but reports from some media outlets accused him of convincing the council to vote against the ordinance.

Ballard said Thursday that he didn't influence anyone, but that his support for the ban waned as he considered who would have been affected.

"I've been pretty clear that I'm never going to tell an Iwo Jima vet that he can't smoke in the VFW. You can take that for what it's worth," Ballard said. "I think there's something out there, but I wish they would concentrate on the health and stop demonizing everyone."

Supporters of a stricter smoking ban believe the health of bar workers should trump a business owner's right to choose to allow smoking.

Many bar owners believe being forced to ban smoking would have crippled their businesses.

Supporters vowed to keep fighting Proposals for a statewide ban in Indiana have died in legislative committee three times.

Marion County's current smoking ban was passed in 2005. It prohibits smoking in any business that allows patrons under the age of 18.

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