Smoke Free Laws and Economic Impact Study

Exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS) is a significant public health concern affecting millions of Americans, many of whom are Hoosiers. A considerable amount of medical research has demonstrated that there is no safe level of secondhand smoke. According to the most recent report on SHS by the US Surgeon General, the best way to deal with the problem of SHS is to encourage states and local communities to enact ordinances which ban smoking in public places and all workplaces including restaurants, bars, and casinos—workplaces that are often exempt from smoke-free legislation.1 The purpose of this brief report is to summarize what researchers have concluded regarding the economic impact smoke-free legislation has on the hospitality industry and on health-related expenditures both nationally and in Indiana.