Clear the air for all Alaskans
There has been a dark cloud looming over the people of Alaska for far too long. A cloud that could easily be lifted, but if it isnt, it will continue to affect the well-being of thousands of Alaskans across the entire state.
Only 50 percent of Alaskans are currently protected by smoke-free workplace laws. For over a decade, Anchorage community members have enjoyed the freedom of breathing clean air while they work. Areas in the Kenai Peninsula, Mat-Su, Fairbanks-North Star, and Kodiak boroughs though, do not have the same local health powers that Anchorage has to make comprehensive smoke-free workplace laws a reality for their residents.
Senate Bill 1, currently before the Legislature, would protect all Alaskans from secondhand smoke and aerosols in the workplace. In 1985, Alaska Airlines became the nations leading example of smoke- and nicotine-free workplaces and flights. We can continue to lead the nation in being a smart, healthy example of what a state should be by passing this law for all of Alaska.
We are in desperate need of a positive change, and this bill can be that change. Employees across this state are tired of having to work in a cloud of smoke and risking their lives just to do their job. Alaskas politicians represent their communities in which they live, and this is what the communities want. Its not against people who smoke; its just asking them to take it outside. Its respecting all who work, visit and interact with our states workplaces. Its respecting the indoor environment in which people spend countless hours. Its respecting Alaska and its respecting ourselves.
Our Legislature has the power to lift the clouds. Bring some light to Alaskans during this dark time of year and pass SB 1.
APOC only as good as its staff
In the 1980s, when I was the executive director of the Alaska Public Offices Commission,the commission understood it could not function effectively unless those who sought direction from its staff were able to rely on that direction.
If someone came before the commission with an apparent violation and said, we called the staff and did what they suggested we do.
If the staff confirmed, but the commission felt that as a policy or interpretation of statute the staffs suggestion was incorrect, the commission would tell the respondent, Were sorry you received incorrect direction, but thank you for doing as the staff directed. Dont do that again.
To the staff, the commission would say, Dont give anyone that suggestion again.
Theda S. Pittman
Move to the Atwood Building
Keep it simple, stupid.
Move to the Atwood Building.
Liars figure; figures dont lie.
Terry L. Chambers
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