Smokeban countdown: 7 days to go

Rookvrije horeca: niet allemaalBad habits never go down without a fight: the Belgian horeca, probably lobbied by Big Tobacco, has created a website where they explain what is and is not allowed under the new 2007 smoking ban. They propose a 4-label system, of which three indicate that smoking is still allowed under one or other form. The used colors are such that “no smoke ban at all” is green, and “smoking completely banned” is red. That is a dirty psychological trick: it gives the restaurant owners the impression they are turning people down with the red sign, and are being more hospitable with the green one.

On the contrary: I call upon all non-smokers to do as me and not enter restaurants that still allow smoking. It should be clear for the owners which smoking policy will scare away the most customers. The correct color coding should be the following:
Roken in de horeca: betere badges

But you might say “and what about the restaurants that install ventilation systems? They shouldn’t be punished for that effort?” Well: ventilation systems are useless. Moreover they are dangerous because they give a false sense of security.

“This study proves that dining in a restaurant or bar’s non-smoking section does not significantly reduce exposure to smoke-related pollutants, even in those few establishments that use these sophisticated, expensive ventilation systems,” says Repace, who is Adjunct Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine and a secondhand smoke consultant. “Smoking bans remain the only viable option that protects the health of non-smokers and hospitality workers.” via

7 days to go. We’re counting.

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