Official suggests mandatory anti-smoking classes

FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) — A Fairfax County supervisor wants to know whether county employees who smoke can be forced to take classes to help them quit.

The Washington Post ( reports that Gerald Hyland, a Democrat, first made the suggestion at a board meeting last month. A county spokeswoman says the county's attorneys are looking into the question.

Hyland's father smoked and died of lung cancer at age 50. He says it's "time to get serious" about reducing the number of smokers in the county workforce.

About 10 years ago, Hyland proposed cutting smokers from the county's payroll. In recent years, some employers have adopted policies against hiring smokers, who often have to pay higher health-insurance premiums.

Several supervisors say they don't agree with the idea of mandatory smoking-cessation classes.


Information from: The Washington Post,

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