Re: Smoking at Scouting Events
Jim Sleezer (JHS8@VM1.UCC.OKSTATE.EDU)
Wed, 30 Jul 1997 14:52:03 -0500
Robin Fowler asks
>Have any packs tried to institute a no smoking
>rule at scouting events? If you did, what were the results?
We kept it very simple. While the Cubs were out of the room, we asked
the parents to please help us by not smoking in the presence of the cubs
when we went to the rink. We suggested that if they needed to smoke they
step outside for a few minutes. We did not ENFORCE the rule but I was
asked (as CM) to speak to one chain smoking parent in the snack bar area.
I told him that several parents had commented to me about his smoking and
could he please take his smoking away from the gathering area. He apologized
and said he guessed he didn't realize he was smoking that much. The
apology was rather half-hearted. Didn't see him at pack meeting for four
months and thought we might have lost him but his son was still at most den
meetings. When he did return, he stopped me after the meeting as said he
was sorry he had missed so many meetings but would now be attending regularly.
He explained that he went home after the skating party and decided that he
really did need to quit smoking all together. He had been skipping meetings
because he felt like he was such a grouch but he really was doing better and
had smoked less than a pack of cigarettes since the skating party. This was
a dramatic but totally unexpected result of our request. I wouldn't expect
it to happen again but did have an ASM quit smoking when he went to camp with
the troop several years ago. Unfortunately, he took it up again after about
a six month break!
There are many areas where people are asked not to smoke (most schools, some
churches, etc.). I think an important thing for smokers is that we not ask
people to not smoke but ask them to smoke some where else (and perhaps
suggest a location where smoking is permitted). Some smokers even
appreciate the discipline of association with the group. In their effort
to cut down smoking, they actually choose to go places where they cannot
smoke. If that's the assistance they need, I'm glad to provide it.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City