Letters to the Editor

Forget ‘smoke shacks,’ just quit

While I agree with some of what Barry Mudge says in “Practical solution: build a gazebo for hospital smokers,” (Letters, The Leader, Jan. 3), we must focus much more on what smokers need, as opposed to what they want because, frankly, I don’t give a damn about what they want.

Building a gazebo or any other structure on hospital property to accommodate smokers is not a practical solution.

While most hospitals around the world are striving for 100-per-cent smoke-free property status (and an ever-increasing number of them have achieved that), building such a structure – a “smoke shack” – would be a huge step backwards.

Getting back to smokers’ needs vs. wants: What smokers need is nicotine.

Bearing in mind that smoking is not addictive (nicotine, which occurs naturally in tobacco, is the most addictive drug known, but the actual act of smoking, per se, is nothing more than an albeit powerful habit), a much better solution would be for hospitals to provide, either free or for sale, any or all of the very wide range of NRTs (Nicotine Replacement Therapies) that are now on the market – from nicotine gum, lozenges, patches, rubs, implants, inhalers to, believe it or not, nicotine water – to name just a few.

So smokers get their nicotine fix and, if they still feel the need to suck on something, well, the options there are pretty much endless too – anything and everything except a burning tube of sliced, diced and carcinogen-laden tobacco leaves, thank you very much.

And the rest of us get the 100-per-cent smoke-free air that we need.

Everybody’s needs are met.

Problem solved.


Errol E. Povah, president,

Airspace Action on Smoking and Health


We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

Surrey and North Delta MPs safe but remain under lockdown following Ottawa shooting
Cancer survivor continues to stand tall
Security stepped up in B.C. after attacks in Ottawa
Aboriginal biz tapping into big potential
B.C. Small Business Month: A beautiful vision in Cloverdale
Hawks move up with a sweep
Kwantlen Chancellor re-appointed
Big Bikers ride through town
Election 2014: David Davis seeks re-election to Langley Township council

Community Events, October 2014

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Oct 21 edition online now. Browse the archives.