Take a Stand for Healthy Meetings by Adopting a Smokefree Resolution
The U.S. adult smoking rate is at an all-time low, at around 14%. The 87% of people in America that don’t smoke prefer smokefree environments. This translates to high demand for smokefree venues for events, conventions, meetings, and accommodations. ANR Foundation’s sister organization, ANR, initiated the Smokefree Meetings campaign as a way to encourage organizations to host meetings only in smokefree cities, or to negotiate smokefree meeting venues in the absence of a smokefree city law. The purpose is to protect the health and safety of conference guests, as well as to counter tobacco industry misinformation that smokefree cities would lose convention business. Many organizations have made the commitment to smokefree meeting venues.
Does Your Organization Have a Large National Conference, Meeting, or Event?
Urge your professional, social, academic, or athletic organization to pass a resolution to host all future meetings in smokefree cities to provide a healthier environment for meeting attendees, show support for smokefree air, and provide positive reinforcement to smokefree cities. We’re especially concerned about youth sporting events that happen in smoky locations like Las Vegas. This decision is not only the healthy thing to do, but also very easy and popular!
Even if there are no smokefree cities in your state, your group could still adopt a resolution making smokefree meeting facilities a priority.
For accommodations there has been a wave of change since 2006. The Westin Hotels & Resorts instituted a 100% smokefree policy for all its North American accommodation facilities, and Marriott International, Inc., followed suit for all of its 2,300 hotels and corporate apartments in the United States and Canada in 2006 too. This included nearly 400,000 guest rooms under the Marriott, JW Marriott, The Ritz-Carlton, Renaissance, Courtyard, Residence Inn, Spring Hill Suites, Fairfield Inn, Towne Place Suites, and Marriott ExecuStay brands. Sheraton Hotels are also smokefree. Hilton and Hyatt are brands that still allow smoking, though it’s become the norm for most travelers to expect smokefree surroundings. ANR worked with Choice Hotels International, Inc., as they determined a new smokefree policy. They announced in 2015 that Comfort Inn would join Comfort Suites in implementing a 100% smokefree policy effective beginning July 1, 2016, making Comfort the largest hotel brand in the United States to do so with more than 1,700 properties across the country.
ANR Foundation has other information on smokefree public spaces, including airports.
Check our lists to identify smokefree locations if you’re not sure about an intended meeting location in a city or state.
Organizations of note that have adopted a smokefree meeting policy include:
American Public Health Association
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Office on Smoking and Health
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)