Philadelphia is saying 'no' to smoking

PHILADELPHIA, Miss. (WTOK) - City leaders in Philadelphia passed an ordinance prohibiting smoking in public areas or businesses. Designated smoking areas will be put in place when the ordinance is put into effect.

In a 3 to 2 vote, Mayor James Young and the Philadelphia Board of Aldermen took a stand on smoking.

"Last meeting we passed a model ordinance prohibiting smoking in the work place and public places,” said Young.

He says while most businesses are already smoke free, the ordinance will require smokers to stand 15 to 20 feet away from a business entrance when smoking.

"Because of the second hand air pollution, we are emphasizing a healthy work place, a healthy environment for our children, a healthy environment for our senior citizens and a healthy environment for us,” said Young.

The ordinance will only apply to cigarette smoking and to businesses and public places.

"It does not impact the home. It does not impact real private areas, but generally where the public goes,” said Young.

He says implementing a small change like this ordinance could help save lives.

"People don't understand the dangers of it or maybe they disregard the dangers of it, but it's all deadly to the human body. Then we look at things we have to change and if we can change something, we can control this,” said Young.

The ordinance is still a work in progress, but fines will be included. Mayor Young expects to see it implemented in around 30 days.