No Smoking Incentives

It was recently brought to my attention about a concern of a few employees within our Illinois financial institution who still smoke on a regular basis. These employees have been seen smoking outside our building by directors who are concerned 1) for their health 2) don't necessarily like to visably see the employee(s) standing outside to have their smoke break-also in customer's view. These smoking employees are all covered under our group health insurance plan. I know I have read about and are aware that some employers basically charge employees who use tobacco products more for their share of insurance premiums. Our employees all pay less than 8% of the actually monthly premium, based upon indiv or family coverage-extremely low premium. Is it possible to indicatein our policy no smoking on business property?? I wondered if you could share with me how you handle this type of issue in your organization or ideas on this topic.



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  • We used to do smoker/non-smoker rates, but now we do our rates based on participation in the wellness program, a component of which is smoking status. At a prior employer I worked for, we restricted smoking to off company grounds, which meant smokers had to take a considerable hike to take a smoke break. We had the same rationale as you - didn't want customers to see employees smoking.

    Bottom line, check your state regulations concerning limiting smoker's rights, then do what best fits your company culture and goals.
  • When our owner company wanted it initiate a no smoking on the property policy they did it in several steps. First, they communicated that the change was coming, but gave employees plenty of time (months) to prepare. Next, they offerred a free Stop Smoking program. It helped many smokers stop. Then they reminded employees weekly that the change was coming, and put up signs everywhere, especially in the areas where employees had smoked previously. It worked very well. I believe offerring the free Stop Smoking program made a big difference. No one had sympathy for the smoker who didn't take or finish the program. This reduced complaints significantly. And many smokers who wanted to stop but had been unable to were helped by the program.

    Hope this helps. Good luck!

  • I remember the good ol' days when I didn't have to hire smokers. Well, I guess technically I still don't have to, but I can't get caught now.

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