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New law bans smoking in assisted living facilities

READ MORE: New law bans smoking in assisted living facilities
WILMINGTON -- It was the work of a local lawmaker inspired by her personal experience. Monday a new law takes effect prohibiting smoking inside nursing homes and assisted living centers. New Hanover County Rep. Carolyn Justice helped introduce this bill. Up until Monday smoking was allowed inside elder-care facilities. Starting Monday residents have to go outside to smoke. Rep. Justice discovered all elder-care facilities in North Carolina allowed smoking and that there was no law on the books to stop people from lighting up. Justice said, "A member of my family was looking at assisted living facilities, thinking about making a move in the future. And so I took her, we visited several places, and she was concerned because one of the rooms she really liked and could afford had a smoker next door, you could smell it." Concerned about the health of residents and the possible fire danger, she went to work to change the law. Justice said, "I know that those people who do smoke and can't stop, that this does pose a problem for them. But they're a small number compared to the thousands and thousands who don't smoke who need to be able to be in these facilities." Reactions to the new law are mixed. At the Spring Arbor assisted living center in Wilmington administrators say the biggest difference is the notice on the door. Smokers now have to go to the front porch to light up. Loretta Thomas with Spring Arbor said, "I do have three residents who smoke. But I don't think it will be a big impact on them. We have a dedicated smoking area for those residents." But Rep. Justice says she did hear opposition from other facilities. "They said, 'What do we do with these seniors that move here, and who've smoked all their life, and you're asking them to make a major life change in a addition to making a major life change.'" Rep. Justice says some assisted living administrators told her smoking helps calm down mentally ill patients. She says she wants to look into that issue further during the next session to see if the law should be modified to possibly allow those patients to smoke.

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assisted living

Great gosh, people! How many people do you know that are in assisted living facilities just because it's just like Cinderella's castle?? Lets get real here. The majority of people in these places are disabled or because of their age, need some help with day to day living. If they choose to smoke (which still is a personal choice, for now) let them light up outside and have a designated indoor space or room to smoke in. It sounds like someone would like to put these people in prison! All of them are human too, and most would give their eye teeth to be able to get the **** outta there. They have no choice because of their situations. They pay to be there, therefore give them a little integrity!

I would hope so!

I would hope people would not smoke in assisted living areas, I can't believe they would. I am a smoker and there is a time and place. Smoke in your own house, Not their's!


if we can get it passed for restaurants...NO SMOKING. There is NOTHING that will ruin my meal faster that smelling smoke while eating dinner. While we are at it...pass it to where I don't have to walk thru a plume of smoke when I walk into a store either...