Survey shows majority favor including casino in Evansville smoking ban

EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) - Tuesday a new coalition called Smokefree Evansville released data showing 89 percent of Evansville adults believed places were healthier for everyone under the old smoking ban.

They data came from a survey commissioned by the Survey Research Center at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis for Smokefree Communities.

Smokefree Communities unveiled the new group and released the survey results exactly two years after Evansville passed its smoking ordinance.

That law was overturned in February by the Indiana Supreme Court who ruled the casino exemption unconstitutional. Smokefree Evansville agrees the exemption is unfair and is urging city officials to produce legislation that includes the casino in a city-wide smoking ban.

They hope the data they released today will spur officials to act. They said the 600 Evansville adults they surveyed are a representative sample and show that most residents want a smokefree city.

  • 75 percent indicated support for the law, which was in place from April 1, 2012 until February 11, 2014
  • 69 percent favored amending the smokefree air ordinance to include the casino
  • 86 percent of Evansville adults feel that all Evansville workers, including casino workers, should be protected from exposure to secondhand smoke; 65 percent of smokers felt the same
  • 84 percent went out as often as before or more frequently when the law was in place

Smokefree Evansville says even though they want to fight for everyone affected by secondhand smoke, the survey also showed the smoking ban may have been able to improve the health of smokers. Under the law, 26 percent of smokers stated they smoked fewer cigarettes and 34 percent had thought about quitting.

The margin of error for this survey is about 3 percent.

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