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City of Alexandria Celebrates 10 Years of Smoke-Free Air

Jan. 27, 2022

Alexandria, La. – (January 26, 2022) – Today The Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living (TFL) and the City of Alexandria celebrated the 10th anniversary of the Alexandria Smoke-Free Air Ordinance, which went into effect January 1, 2012, with a ceremony at the Hotel Bentley. Alexandria was the first municipality in Louisiana to pass a comprehensive smoke-free ordinance that includes bars and gaming facilities, which has led to the passage of 29 other smoke-free ordinances across Louisiana.

Current and former elected officials and advocates who helped pass and maintain Alexandria’s smoke-free ordinance were in attendance, including Jeffrey W. Hall, Mayor, City of Alexandria; Mark A. Thomas, Deputy Secretary, Louisiana Department of Health; Lee Rubin, City Councilman At-Large, City of Alexandria; Jennifer Gilchrist, TFL Regional Manager, Region 6; Dr. Earl Benjamin-Robinson, TFL Director; Dr. David Holcombe, Regional Administrator/Medical Director, Louisiana Office of Public Health, Region 6; Roosevelt Johnson, former City Council President, City of Alexandria; Mitzi LaSalle, former City Councilwoman, City of Alexandria; Chubby Carrier, Zydeco Grammy Winner; and more.

“Ten years ago, the community decided to put health first and extend the current smoke-free ordinance to include bars and gaming facilities,” said Mayor Jeffrey W. Hall. “That decision has had a positive impact on our community by reducing secondhand smoke, encouraged residents to utilize Quitline services, and increased revenue at our bars and gaming facilities. I applaud the Mayor and City Council members who were instrumental in passing this ordinance in 2012 and look forward to celebrating even more milestones on the 20th anniversary.”

During the ceremony, TFL also recognized four Healthier Air for All Champions for their efforts around the passage of the Alexandria Smoke-Free Ordinance. The Champions are Chubby Carrier, 2010 Grammy winner for Best Zydeco or Cajun Music Album; Greg Gormanous, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Psychology, at LSU Alexandria; Roosevelt Johnson, former City Council President, and Training and Development Coordinator at Renaissance Home for Youth; and Kitty Wynn, Director of Prevention for the Central LA Human Services District.

“Significant, major, community change is hard and rarely happens without team collaboration, cooperation, and a common purpose,” said Dr. Earl Benjamin-Robinson, director of TFL. “These four Healthier Air for All Champions each played a vital role in garnering support for this ordinance and sharing the positive impact it would, and ultimately did, have on the community.”

Currently, approximately 30 percent of Louisiana is protected from secondhand smoke due to local ordinances. Those interested in implementing an ordinance in their area can visit https://healthierairforall.org... for additional information.


The Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living

The Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living (TFL) engages in local and statewide tobacco control policy efforts that focus on tobacco prevention and initiation among youth, eliminate exposure to secondhand smoke, promote cessation services, and identify and eliminate tobacco-related disparities. TFL is guided by best practices in tobacco control and envisions a healthier Louisiana by reducing the excessive burden of tobacco use on all Louisianans. For more information visit www.tobaccofreeliving.org. To find out more about the dangers of secondhand smoke and show your support for a smoke-free Louisiana, visit www.healthierairforall.org. To learn more about quitting tobacco, visit www.quitwithusla.org.

About the Louisiana Cancer Research Center (LCRC)

Founded by the Louisiana State Legislature in 2002, the LCRC is a public-private partnership designed to promote education about cancer and conduct important research on the diagnosis, detection, treatment, and prevention of cancer in Louisiana. The LCRC partners with the public at large and four major cancer research institutions in Louisiana: LSU Health, Tulane University, Ochsner Health System, and Xavier University. More information about the LCRC is available at www.louisianacancercenter.org.

About the Louisiana Public Health Institute (LPHI)

LPHI, founded in 1997, is a statewide community-focused 501(c)(3) nonprofit and public health institute committed to ensuring all Louisianans have just and fair opportunities to be healthy and well. Our work focuses on areas that touch public health, including tobacco prevention and control, building healthier communities, assessing needs of communities, supporting the whole health needs of individuals and families from early childhood to older adults, COVID-19, and more. We create authentic partnerships with both communities and partners to align action for health. For more information, visit www.lphi.org.