Staff as well as customers say no to smoky pubs

Related tags Licensed victuallers association Atmosphere

It is not only customers who prefer pubs that are less smoky but staff as well, according to new research.Speaking at the Federation of Licensed...

It is not only customers who prefer pubs that are less smoky but staff as well, according to new research.

Speaking at the Federation of Licensed Victuallers Association's annual conference this week, Mike Pitts, an independent consultant who carries out air quality audits, said: "Eighty-four per cent of staff prefer working in a ventilated area and search for a pub they would like to work in."

He added that the employees of well-ventilated pubs were likely to stay longer and take less time off sick than those who work in smoky environments. This in itself would pay for the investment that licensees have made in ventilation systems, he said.

Mr Pitts also referred to cases in Australia and America, where staff have taken their employers to court for smoke-related illnesses such as bronchitis or cancer.

And he said he recognised that well-ventilated and less smoky atmospheres ensure that customers stay longer and spend more money. This is supported by the results of The Publican Newspaper/Britvic Soft Drinks Pub-goers Survey.

Mr Pitts urged licensees to improve ventilation and to sign up to the trade's voluntary charter on smoking.

The charter recommends:

  • the use of signage to inform customers of smoking policy
  • licensees make a written note of the outlet's smoking policy
  • licensees train staff to answer customer queries on smoking policy
  • licensees use no-smoking areas and ventilation to improve the atmosphere in their outlets where possible.

While 27 per cent are already compliant, research shows that this is expected to reach 61 per cent by January 2003, well ahead of the 50 per cent target set by the Government. and The Publican Newspaper are supporting the trade's Charter Group and the Atmosphere Improves Results initiative in their efforts to ensure more licensees sign up.

It can take a matter of minutes to become charter compliant but it could save thousands of pounds in the long run. So the message to all licensees and pub operators is "Don't Delay Sign Up Today!"

Related stories:

Two-thirds of pubs will be smoking charter-compliant by 2003 according to a recent survey - the trade needs to work to ensure that that target is met. We take an in-depth look at the current situation.

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