The use of tobacco products at workplaces is dangerous to the health of the employees. Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable deaths in users and non-users. Employers are encouraged to adopt tobacco-free worksite policies to promote and protect the health of the employees in the organization. A comprehensive tobacco-free policy at the workplace promotes quitting and eliminates exposure to secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke is a mixture of smoke exhaled by smokers and the smoke from the burning end of combustible tobacco product. There is no safe amount of secondhand smoke exposure.

Reasons for Tobacco-Free Workplaces

  • Eliminate exposure to secondhand smoke.
  • Reduce the cost associated with cleaning and maintenance of the property.
  • Reduce the risk of fire incident.
  • Reduce costs associated with smoke damage. 
  • Increase productivity in the employees by reducing time off due to tobacco-related or tobacco worsening illnesses.
  • Reduce the healthcare cost that is associated with tobacco related illnesses and diseases.
  • Improve the quality of life and health of the employees.
  • Increase revenue for businesses.

Action Steps to Implementing and Enforcing a Tobacco-Free Workplace Policy

  • Organizations are encouraged to develop a workgroup or task force to oversee the tobacco-free policy implementation and enforcement plan.
  • Provide resources to educate the task force, employees, visitors and vendors.
  • Survey the employees to assess their level of knowledge and attitude towards tobacco-free policy.
  • Create a communication plan.
  • Develop a tobacco-free policy that is concise, clear, simple and comprehensive.
  • Develop an enforcement plan that is consistent with other personnel policies and disciplinary procedures.
  • Announce the policy several months prior to the implementation date.
  • Finally, organizations are encouraged to provide cessation services for the employees and patients to promote quitting among them.

Additional Resources

Download this pdf file. Worksite Wellness Toolkit


Last Updated 12/21/2022