National advocacy organization, Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights is concerned with industry-sought tax breaks and federal funding, even as casinos fail to go smokefree indoors.
"No credible public health official would approve of allowing the removal of masks to smoke, but it's still standard operating procedure in too many casinos, despite the pandemic."
EXCERPT FROM LETTER:
"The casino gaming industry is seeking a federal tax credit to help cover costs associated with cleaning and disinfecting measures they have implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic. While we are pleased casinos have adopted these protocols to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, we are concerned that, unlike a significant number of Tribal casinos, too many commercial casinos are failing to take a commonsense step that would have a significant effect on preventing the spread of the virus -- going 100% smokefree indoors," Hallett wrote. "According to the CDC, 'COVID-19 spreads less commonly through contact with contaminated surfaces,' with close contact and airborne transmission being much more common ways of transmission occurring. Yet too many commercial casinos refuse to address the more pressing matter of airborne spread through indoor smoking."
ANR President and CEO Cynthia Hallett, MPH, in the letter to President Biden