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Making the smoking ban work

5 October 2004

Making the smoking ban work

Hospitality operators will need to look at a great many initiatives to counter the expected downturn in business they will experience when the non smoking legislation takes effect in December.

This was the message delivered by Hospitality Association Chief Executive Bruce Robertson to delegates at the Association’s annual conference at Sky City today in Auckland.

He urged delegates to work with their smoking patrons to find the most appropriate way to meet their needs while complying with the law, and said that this would include providing practicable, appropriate outdoor areas for smokers.

“Bar operators need to ensure that their smoking patrons still feel welcome even if they have to pop outside for a cigarette”, he said.

“The Government might be anti-smokers and be trying to marginalise them but the hospitality industry welcomes them and still wants their patronage.

“Bar operators should also be inviting all those anti-smoking zealots who said they would go to bars if they were non-smoking, to make good on those promises come December,” he said.

Mr Robertson said it was ironic that the hospitality industry was now in a position of having to make a Government policy they strongly opposed work to preserve the livelihood of themselves and their staff. He said he hoped smokers would still support bars, and would take their frustration out in the ballot box next year.

ENDS

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