2 More Smokefree Casinos Opening in Pennsylvania
“We applaud Greenwood Gaming & Entertainment for leading the way in providing a safe, smokefree environment for its employees and guests”
January 26, 2023
Philadelphia, PA — Two more smokefree casinos are opening in Pennsylvania, according to a report today from Gary Rotstein of Penn Bets:
“Parx’s run as the top revenue-generating casino in the state has been unaffected by the [smoking] ban, which has been extended to the new satellite operation in Shippensburg. And it appears they will get some company in the future. In testimony at a public hearing Wednesday before the gaming board approved a license for the future Ira Lubert-Bally’s Corp. mini-casino at Nittany Mall in Centre County, a casino representative said the facility — at least a year away from opening — would be non-smoking.”
Read the entire story: https://www.pennbets.com/parx-opens-shippensburg-satellite-17th-pennsylvania-casino/
“We applaud Greenwood Gaming & Entertainment for leading the way in providing a safe, smokefree environment for its employees and guests at Parx — and showing that business can not only keep pace but thrive,” said Cynthia Hallett, president and CEO of Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights. “Now, they are doubling down on this success in Bensalem, where they compete with smoke-filled (for now) Atlantic City casinos, by opening its Shippensburg casino as a smokefree property. We are encouraged to see yet another smokefree casino is coming to the Keystone State when the Ira Lubert-Bally’s Corp. casino opens its doors. The trend is clearly moving towards smokefree indoor casinos because that’s what today’s customer expects.”
A report by Las Vegas-based C3 Gaming found that casinos without indoor smoking outperform their smoking counterparts. “Data from multiple jurisdictions clearly indicates that banning smoking no longer causes a dramatic drop in gaming revenue. In fact, non-smoking properties appear to be performing better than their counterparts that continue to allow smoking.”
Ventilation systems are not the answer, according to the engineers who design such systems and collectively make up the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). “[Ventilation systems] are not effective against secondhand smoke” and “can reduce only odor and discomfort, but cannot eliminate exposure,” they wrote to casino executives. “There is no currently available or reasonably anticipated ventilation or air-cleaning system that can adequately control or significantly reduce the health risks of [environmental tobacco smoke] to an acceptable level.”
More and more casinos nationwide are going smokefree, including Park MGM on the Las Vegas Strip. At least 160 sovereign Tribal gaming venues have implemented 100% smokefree policies during COVID-19, 23 states require commercial casinos to be smokefree indoors, and more than 1,000 gaming properties do not permit smoking indoors.
ABOUT AMERICANS FOR NONSMOKERS’ RIGHTS
Americans for Nonsmoker’s Rights (ANR) is a member-supported, non-profit advocacy group that has been working for 45 years, since 1976, to protect everyone’s right to breathe nontoxic air in workplaces and public places, from offices and airplanes to restaurants, bars, and casinos. ANR has continuously shined a light on the tobacco industry’s interference with sound and life-saving public health measures and successfully protected 61% of the population with local or statewide smokefree workplace, restaurant, and bar laws. ANR aims to close gaps in smokefree protections for workers in all workplaces, including bars, music venues, casinos, and hotels. For more information, please visit https://no-smoke.org/ and https://smokefreecasinos.org/.