Put that filthy thing out!
February 18, 2004 8:17 AM   Subscribe

Smoking banned from the Irish workplace (including pubs) from March 29th
Looks like all of us smokers will have to comply. Personally, I can't wait for the ban to come in as it will be further incentive for me to fight the addicition. Hopefully the ban on smoking at my office will mean it'll be easier to stop. All that said, I wonder how it's going to be enforced? The way I see it, the only way it could be properly enforced is through the public being prepaired to report transgressions to those charged with enforcing the law. Maybe the fear of that will make sure that business owners see to it that their workplaces are smoke free.
posted by tomcosgrave (21 comments total)
I am sure this will be rigourously enforced in my uncles pub in west cork.
posted by johnnyboy at 8:35 AM on February 18, 2004

You can smoke in an office?
posted by Hildegarde at 8:43 AM on February 18, 2004

I think the ban is a great idea and look forward to coming home after nights out minus ashtray stench.

As for aiding its enforcement I would not report an offender and wonder how many others will. In any case one day it will be fully enforced and lighting up in a pub will seem akin to pulling out a flamethrower!

ps this is a good opportunity for the Irish mefites to show themselves
posted by kenaman at 8:48 AM on February 18, 2004

It's a great pity that nanny government seems to be taking over, thanks in no small part to the EU. I remember the days when a pub was a place where consenting adults could go to smoke, get drunk, swear, get away from the kids and generally behave like idiots. Soon all these pleasures will be gone, and we'll be left with the soulless hellholes of government-supervised theme pubs.
posted by derbs at 8:52 AM on February 18, 2004

In New York State smoking in the workplace has been banned for.... well, a very long time. But smoking bans in bars/pubs went into effect last year. I am a non-smoker but thought the ban ridiculous. If a bar wanted to allow their patrons to smoke, they had the right to, being private property and all. The reasoning put forth was that the ban protected the health of the employees. I guess I can see that, since I get to work in a smoke free environment too, but it's a different environment altogether!

Then I went out to pubs afterwards and oh glories of glories! Returning home not smelling like a week old cigarette butt is wonderful!
However I think that the state should allow bars to have smoking permits. I don't see any problem with that, kind of like knowing that if I go to a bar, OMG they might have alcohol!! :^)
posted by absquatulate at 9:02 AM on February 18, 2004

Fight it. We did here in DC.
posted by pjdoland at 9:06 AM on February 18, 2004

Previously MeFi'd here.
posted by grabbingsand at 9:09 AM on February 18, 2004

But when will we get the Irish out of the workplace?
posted by xmutex at 9:11 AM on February 18, 2004

Why would we fight it? A majority of Irish people, and a majority of smokers are in favour of the ban.
posted by doozer_ex_machina at 9:15 AM on February 18, 2004

The ban will not apply in hotel rooms, prisons, nursing homes and psychiatric hospitals.
This part of the ban is odd.
posted by thomcatspike at 9:19 AM on February 18, 2004

Boy, I've never seen an issue so divisive. It's like a civil war, isn't it? Even amongst my friends, who are all very intelligent people, they are totally divided on smoking. Some of my friends, for instance, think these pro-smoking people are annoying idiots. Others of my friends think these pro-smoking people are evil fucks. When will we reach a consensus?
/obligatory bill hicks

Speaking of consensus, its generally assumed that there'll be a legal challenge to this and that it will be delayed for the best part of the year, so no worries for all the pro smoking lobbyists out there.
posted by kev23f at 9:21 AM on February 18, 2004

You can smoke in an office?

Well, not at your desk, but a lot of places have smoking areas beside doors or something like that.
posted by tomcosgrave at 9:24 AM on February 18, 2004

What will happen may be what happened here--bartenders and managers were told to play cop and enforce it, on fear of losing their job if the bar was fined during their shifts.
posted by amberglow at 9:58 AM on February 18, 2004

I was hoping they'd legalize cannabis, and instead they outlaw smoking.
posted by spazzm at 10:10 AM on February 18, 2004

Regarding pubs/bars & restaurants:
Dallas TX's has a smoking ban in restaurants with exceptions in the restaurant's bar and cigar rooms must meet specific specifications. A friend whom is a owner at Dallas restaurant said to me last night: our city has lost any hospitality it had left, because of this smoking ban. Some history here, the last several decades, Dallas generated a lot of its revenue through hospitality businesses. Also, a lot of the franchise restaurants are based out of here where they had their start. Since the ban, our city is now ranked the #1 spot in the US for violent crimes. How this correlates: less city revenue for law enforcement and a crappy city mayor.
posted by thomcatspike at 11:25 AM on February 18, 2004

There are all kinds of benefits. For instance, shortly after the smoking ban in my city, the staff of a local bar noticed the odor of a dead body that had been in the building for more than a year.
posted by teg at 11:29 AM on February 18, 2004

This is like the argument over abortion. There's just no convincing people their side is wrong.

"People should have the right to choose!"
"But you're muuuuurrduring us!"

This is a load of stinkin' bs, either way. The people these laws are supposed to be "protecting" (many times from themselves) are the ones who are going to lose tips, even their jobs once people realize they can just buy a 12-pack and smoke at home if they want to. You know who suffered most in NYC after the smoking ban? Bars and restaurants. Know who got fucked when they raised cigarette prices to the absurd $7.50? All those little bodegas and corner stores in the city. Now they've got the lottery and, well, that's it.

In this economy, the geniuses in New York (and Boston, and a lot of other places) figured, "Hey, let's destroy a few ways to make a living. You know, because people who are just scraping buy need more of a challenge if they really want to live in the city." Nice one, guys.

Maybe they should charge an entry-tax to Walmart. See if they can't get some added revenue or something.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 12:57 PM on February 18, 2004

"People should have the right to choose!"
"But you're muuuuurrduring us!"

The bar or restaurant owner should be the one to choose: right or wrong?
posted by thomcatspike at 1:53 PM on February 18, 2004

Until the end of the 1970s most Irish pubs banned women. Despite the naysayers this ban was enforced rigidly using gender segregation (men in the bar, women in the lounge ghetto, if available).

The ban against women slowly disappeared during the 1980s (but it was still possible to find urban pubs in the 1990s where women were discouragedm if not actively ejected). Legislation forbidding gener discrimination had been enacted during the late 1970s but it still took a while for most of the Neanderthals to get with the program.

The same will be true for smoking in bars. Drinking is all about social control, and control within the pub is about hegemony, and the hegemonic apparatus of an Irish Pub is resistant to change.
posted by meehawl at 2:25 PM on February 18, 2004

SIRC have great stuff on their site. Their Passport to the Pub should be required reading for any visitor to the UK.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 3:43 PM on February 18, 2004

Pub’ is short for ‘Public House’
Forgot that, guess it seems a public place which pancakes all I said above.
posted by thomcatspike at 3:47 PM on February 18, 2004

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