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Indiana anti-smoking forces to try again

Sept. 9, 2010 at 12:19 PM   |   Comments

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INDIANAPOLIS, Sept. 9 (UPI) -- Anti-smoking advocates in Indiana, who've failed three times to get a state-wide ban enacted, will try again -- and this time things are different, they say.

In the past year, four states -- Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio and Illinois -- have passed tough anti-smoking laws.

Danielle Patterson, director of government relations for the American Heart Association, says that makes Indiana a "smoky island" in the Midwest, The Indianapolis Star reported Thursday.

State Rep. Charlie Brown, D-Gary, vowed to pursue a fourth try in the legislature.

"This is a major health issue," Brown said, "and I have to keep pushing."

Smoking bans have passed the Democrat-controlled House but those bills have been killed by Republicans in the state Senate amid concerns over smokers' rights and the financial impact a ban might have on some businesses.

Rep. Eric Turner, R-Marion, Wednesday joined with Brown and said Indiana was "behind the curve."

Across the country, 22 states prohibit smoking in workplaces, restaurants and bars.

Brown said his bill would include "all facilities the public visits."

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