As you may have already heard, the city of Dayton in the state of Ohio has recently announced that it will no longer be hiring anyone who smokes or vapes in an attempt to “encourage a healthier workplace and environment”.
Another reason behind the new regulations is more practical — saving money. According to Kenneth Couch, the city’s director of human resources, “smoking cost approximately an additional $6,000 per year in direct medical costs and lost productivity.
Thus, all of the city’s employees hired after July 15th will not be allowed to use nicotine or tobacco products at work or during their time off. Those hired before that date will not be affected by the new policy, but the city has already started the process of eliminating designated smoking areas.
It seems like there is no distinction made between methods of nicotine or tobacco use and smoking and vaping, as they are treated in the same way in the new policy — even though vaping is often used and even recommended as a smoking cessation tool, and has been proven to be 90% less health risk than smoking. It has also left a lot of people wondering about all the other potentially performance, and health affecting activities like drinking, eating fast food, leading a sedentary lifestyle, etc. that are not taken into consideration in the new policy, which seems to single out smoking and vaping as the only two “bad” habits.
Vaping vs. smoking debate aside, the new policy can be a slippery slope. Personal habits and private lives that may have nothing or very little to do with productivity, or how good one may be at their job will now be examined by employers and affect their hiring decisions. In fact, labor union leaders have voiced concerns that policies of this kind may lead to more scrutiny, and limit the personal freedoms of potential employees. This will also narrow the pool of potential new hires for companies in Dayton and, possibly, lead to smokers and vapers searching for job opportunities outside the city.
What is your take on the issue? Do you think vaping affect your productivity? Would you consider giving up vaping for a job?