Tobacco Free Workplace
Eliminating tobacco in the workplace is the single most impactful step an employer can take to improve employee health and productivity.
The Nevada Clean Indoor Air Act was passed by a majority of voters in November 2006 and went into law the following month. Smoking is now prohibited inside almost every workplace, even businesses with only one employee. The only workplaces where smoking is still allowed by law are the following:
- The gaming floor of casinos (i.e., designated areas in casinos with gaming tables and/or slot machines, where minors are not allowed);
- Bars, taverns, and saloons that do not serve food;
- Strip clubs and brothels;
- Tobacco stores;
- Hotel and motel rooms;
- Some convention centers for some meetings; and,
- Homes unless used as a daycare or healthcare business.
All business owners can ban smoking even if the law allows for an exemption. Apartment complexes and other residence owners may also ban smoking in their facilities.
By eliminating smoking at work, the health of the non-smoking employees and customers is protected, but smoker’s health is also improved. Many smokers either quit or cut back the number of cigarettes they smoke after a smoking ban has been put into place.
Next Steps: Adopt the Policy Option that is Best for Your Business
The law does not protect all workers in all locations, so many businesses are taking it a step further and banning all tobacco use (including smokeless tobacco) on their entire property (even outside spaces) and in their vehicles and other equipment. Below are samples of tobacco policies for almost every business, and here are guidelines for minimum distance smoking and vaping policies.
A GOOD tobacco policy will cover:
- No smoking or use of tobacco in any building or vehicle used for company business;
- No smoking or use of tobacco within a minimum distance (usually 25 feet or more) from doorways, windows or air intake vents; and,
- Provide and regularly update information on cessation resources for employees.
A BETTER tobacco policy will cover:
- All items listed in the Good tobacco policy;
- No smoking or use of tobacco while conducting a business related activity regardless of location (no tobacco use while out in the field);
- No smoking or use of tobacco on any company owned, leased, or operated property;
- No hosting or sponsoring of meetings or conferences in facilities that allow smoking; and,
- Employee health benefits that cover free nicotine replacement therapy, other proven pharmacologic therapies, and cessation opportunities.
The BEST tobacco policy will cover:
- All items listed in the Better tobacco policy; and,
- No use of cigarette or “tobacco like” products such as e-cigarettes in all banned areas and activities.
Holding meetings in smoke free venues
Ever wonder why meetings and conferences in our community always seem to be held in places that still allow smoking? At one time there were few options but times have changed. Here is a list of 100% smoke free meeting facilities for Washoe County, Storey County, and Carson City. When considering the location for your next meeting or event, please consider these businesses. Nevada Smoke-Free Meetings Directory
- Minimum distance smoking and vaping policy guidelines
- Request to receive free no-smoking window decals and tobacco cessation information
- Downloadable no smoking/vaping signs
GetHealthy@washoecounty.gov | 775-328-6160
Last modified on 09/22/2021