Californian group pushes AGA for smoking ban

The  group has urged the AGA to encourage smoking bans.
The group has urged the AGA to encourage smoking bans.

An anti-smoking group argues that casinos that allow smoking should not be eligible for Covid-19 relief funds.

US.- A Californian anti-smoking group has sent a letter to the American Gaming Association (AGA) asking its board of directors not to give Covid-19 relief funds to casinos that do not have a smoking ban in place.

The two-page letter from Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights (ANR) addressed to AGA president and CEO Bill Miller argues that casino operators should only be eligible for taxpayer dollars if they agree to implement a smoke-free policy.

President and CEO of the ANR, Cynthia Hallet, wrote: “We take issue with casinos potentially receiving such relief funding that is necessitated by a pandemic involving respiratory issues while still permitting an activity — indoor smoking — that promotes the spread of COVID-19.” 

The AGA has yet to comment on the letter. The association is scheduled to meet virtually on Friday.

A Nevada-based group also recently urged the industry to go smoke-free, arguing that other casinos should follow in the footsteps of Park MGM, which became the first non-smoking casino on the Las Vegas strip when it reopened on September 30.

AGA CEO Bill Miller urged the government to offer more financial assistance to casinos and their employees in his speech at the G2E 2020 conference.