New Orleans Ban Against Smoking In Bars Goes Into Effect

Bars never close in New Orleans, but now those late night hot spots and cozy dives won’t be filled with smoke: Following the lead of many of the country’s major cities, New Orleans put a ban against smoking inside bars into effect as of today.

Though New Orleans is a latecomer to smoke-free bars, it isn’t the last one to take an all-encompassing approach to banning smoke, notes the New York Times: Fellow popular travel destinations like Las Vegas, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Miami, Memphis, St. Louis, among others, still have yet to completely ban smoking in all bars, according to the American Nonsmokers’ Rights Foundation [PDF]

This wasn’t a sudden move, however, as Louisiana state law had already banned smoking in restaurants and many bars and clubs had enacted their own smoking bans voluntarily.

Cut to last fall, when City Council member LaToya Cantrell, introduced an anti-smoking proposal. After some revising, the council approved a smoking ban ordinance a few months later.

While some will surely be glad to inhale lungfuls of smoke-free air — including many performers and musicians, bartenders and servers who’ve had to work in venues filled with smoking, other people who enjoy a smoke and a drink after finishing work at 2 a.m. aren’t so pleased.

Then there are those who mostly seem fine with the whole thing, especially given the plethora of smoking bans across the U.S.

“This is one of the smokiest bars in town,” the owner of a jazz venue told the NYT. “I know a bunch of people who don’t come in here because of the smoke,” he said, listing names. “Maybe they’ll come back.”

New Orleans Bars Issue Last Call for Smoking [New York Times]

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