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Letter: Make a plan to quit smoking today


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Note: The statements, views, and opinions contained in this letter to the editor are those of the author and are not endorsed by, nor do they necessarily reflect, the opinions of The Republic.

From: Beth Hardesty

Nashville

Received: Nov. 13

The American Cancer Society and the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network will celebrate the 37th Great American Smokeout today. For millions of American smokers, there’s never been a better time to make a plan to quit. In our community, I’m working with cancer survivors and volunteers to not only encourage quitting, but call on lawmakers to do their part to help those who are struggling to quit this deadly habit.

The Great American Smokeout is about protecting all Americans from the deadly effects of secondhand smoke. The U.S. Surgeon General has determined that there is no safe level of exposure to secondhand smoke, which is a major cause of lung cancer, heart disease and emphysema. In fact, each year secondhand smoke is responsible for nearly 50,000 deaths from cancer and heart disease among non-smokers.

Elected officials have the power to protect workers in Columbus by passing a comprehensive smoke-free ordinance so that we can all breathe smoke-free air. Smoke-free laws not only help protect workers and patrons from being exposed to deadly secondhand smoke, they also help smokers quit.

I call on the Columbus City Council to join more than 520 communities, 23 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands that are smoke-free by passing an ordinance to protect us from this serious health hazard.

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