By Sara Price
Health Department representative Debbie Marvadakis urged commissioners to make every outdoor venue in the county a smoke-free area at the Emery County Commission meeting on Tuesday. Her main concern was the popular E-cigarettes that have been marketed as a healthy alternative to smoking and an effective smoking cessation tool. Widely unknown to the public, E-cigarettes are banned wherever regular cigarettes are banned.
Debbie described them as “trendy looking” and something the younger populations are interested in. Marvadakis claimed that current usage among young people is three times higher than cigarette usage would have been.
Despite the marketed innocence of E-cigarettes, they in fact do contain several chemicals, including glycol, which can be harmful to both the smoker and those around them. E-cigarettes also have nicotine levels 3-7 times higher than a regular cigarette.
Commissioner Migliori expressed concern over the implementation of the smoke-free zones and asked if the health department would offer support for this move to smoke-free outdoor venues.
Marvadakis assured Migliori that the signs the health department currently provides at some venues take a large bite out of required enforcement. They also provide guidance to community leaders in their efforts to move toward smoke-free events. She also explained how Moab, Helper, Green River and Price City have effectively transformed their events to smoke-free environments.