Woman claims she was fired for smoking cigarettes outside of work [OPINION]
Posted by: KC Orcutt
Published on: August 7th, 2012 at 2:30 PM
CNN did a report this morning about how third-hand smoke is just as bad for you, as well, all smoke in general. Third hand smoke is the lingering smoke smell that is on smokers (in hair or in clothing) or people near smoking, that people breath in despite the smoke not coming from a direct source or from second hand. Essentially, third hand smoke really can be anywhere, even if we aren’t conscious of it.
A woman in Minnesota is claiming that she was fired from her job as a receptionist at the Frauenshuh Cancer Center of Park Nicollet Health Services, solely because she smelled like smoke at work. Stephanie Cannon is a smoker, but she told ABC that she never smoked at work or outside of work; only in the privacy of her own home.
Six week into working at her job, her boss told her she can’t show up to work smelling like smoke. Cannon claimed that she made efforts to eliminate the smell from her clothing, but the smell wouldn’t go away and Cannon was fired as a result.
Third hand smoke has been shown to put infants and children that come in contact with it at risk, according to the New York Times.
In Florida, three paramedics were fired after being found guilty of violating their employer’s no-nicotine policy.
Cannon is currently working with an attorney claiming that what she does in her home is her own business. I fully agree. I think that it was unfair that she was fired for that reason and should hopefully win in court.
I can see how being in the medical or childcare profession, and also being a smoker, is quite a contrasting or controversial habit, but I do think people have the freedom to do so. Until third hand smoke is proven to be a deadly killer just as first-hand smoke, I think people should be allowed to work in these fields and smoke if they want to in their own homes, outside of work. I do think that they should make an effort to keep the habit private though.
I’m pretty sure that in 2012 people who smoke are aware of the fact that it’s not good for them, but it shouldn’t affect their employment.
What do you think? Should Cannon be fired given her field? Do you think people working in certain fields should be banned from smoking cigarettes at work? Is that fair?