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    Default Smoking//Smokeless Tobacco Use

    I have been given the task of writing an SOG/SOP that involves Smoking and Use of Smokeless Tobacco in the fire house and in scenes. I am curious to know if anyone has such a policy, what it might contain for wording, and discipline for those who violate it.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

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    That is really a policy or general order instead of a procedure or guideline.

    The chief needs to issue an order that no tobacco may be used in the station or on a scene. If he feels the need, he can explain why, i.e. are members spitting on the floors (I've seen it done in some stations) or on scenes. Keep it short and to the point. Discipline like any other violation of orders.
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    Ours is pretty simple - no use of tabacco, on or off duty. Penalties follow the county's personnel guidelines, which include oral discussion, oral discipline, written discipline, all the way up to termination.

    No, we're not going to fire anyone for smoking off-duty on thier first offense.

    Policy has been effective for every employee hired since 1999, which is around 200 people.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    Ours is pretty simple - no use of tabacco, on or off duty. Penalties follow the county's personnel guidelines, which include oral discussion, oral discipline, written discipline, all the way up to termination.

    No, we're not going to fire anyone for smoking off-duty on thier first offense.

    Policy has been effective for every employee hired since 1999, which is around 200 people.

    How is it any of your dept. or the city's business that an employee smokes/does smokeless tobacco off duty...I understand that it is policy and it is in place before your hired, you know what your going into before your hired yaddy yadda....Smoking/dipping is a personal choice and the city goverment should have no say what so ever what you put in your body off duty( so long as its legal and dosent affect your preformance on duty)...But hey whatever, in a city/town with only 200 employees you could get by with that policy...In a bigger city it would be laughed down even if it did managed to get passed it would never hold up...Small town policies amuse me....lol

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    Thanks for the questions. I'll answer them to the best of my ability.

    First, we're not a small town, nor do we worry about "small town politics." We have a population of 300,000; our department has 525 uniformed positions; the county has a total of 6000 municipal employees.

    The basis of the policy is related to the Virginia "Heart-Lung Bill." Basically, it says that career and volunteer firefighters in the Commonwealth that come down with cancer, or have a cardiac issue, are automatically presumed to have contracted the medical ailment(s) as a result of being a firefighter (Read the entire bill here). It's easier for the county to comply with the directives of the law if the employee was not a smoker during employment, as it can be more easily argued that the employee's profession, not thier off-duty habits, lead to the sickness.

    Since we're a right-to-work state, we don't have contracts to follow, and are compelled to follow the rules and regs set forth by the county. Haven't heard anyone here complain about it....
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    Thanks for the questions. I'll answer them to the best of my ability.

    First, we're not a small town, nor do we worry about "small town politics." We have a population of 300,000; our department has 525 uniformed positions; the county has a total of 6000 municipal employees.

    The basis of the policy is related to the Virginia "Heart-Lung Bill." Basically, it says that career and volunteer firefighters in the Commonwealth that come down with cancer, or have a cardiac issue, are automatically presumed to have contracted the medical ailment(s) as a result of being a firefighter (Read the entire bill here). It's easier for the county to comply with the directives of the law if the employee was not a smoker during employment, as it can be more easily argued that the employee's profession, not thier off-duty habits, lead to the sickness.

    Since we're a right-to-work state, we don't have contracts to follow, and are compelled to follow the rules and regs set forth by the county. Haven't heard anyone here complain about it....


    Ok, sorry I misunderstood your first post, I thought you said you had 200 TOTAL city/county employees...6000 is a big diffrence...I read the Bill and understand where they are coming from as far as a health aspect goes...Let's be honest, smoking/tobacco use promotes poor health, there have been no proven health benifits to smoking. I also work in a "right to work state" and understand full well, follow our policies or hit the road...BUT no matter how great the health benifits are of not smoking with 6000 employees you have to have some who break the rules...Anyway, thanks for clearing that up, makes alot more sense now reading where your from, the # of emplyees, and the BILL it self...Thanks

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    We have a similar tobacco policy at our small volunteer fire department. Very short and to the point. You can see it at www.farmvillefire.net listed under files on the left hand side. Maybe this will help.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    Ours is pretty simple - no use of tabacco, on or off duty. Penalties follow the county's personnel guidelines, which include oral discussion, oral discipline, written discipline, all the way up to termination.

    No, we're not going to fire anyone for smoking off-duty on thier first offense.

    Policy has been effective for every employee hired since 1999, which is around 200 people.
    same here....

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    In MA we are a "safe lung law state." Which mean it is one of a few states that have a law that does not allow certain job positions to smoke on or off duty. The reason why is for insurance purposes. If you come down with lung cancer or other illnesses, your state paid insurance wants to know its due to conditions you were exposed to on the job and not cuase you smoked a pack a day.

    We have no rule on smokeless tobacco.
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