Restaurants, bars build “smoke-easies”
Did the city of Fort Wayne even consider the effects of its ban on smoking in restaurants and bars? Here’s Kevin Leininger on local restaurants’ efforts to aid and comfort its smoking customers:
(The law) bans smoking in certain “enclosed areas,” which it defines as “space between a floor and ceiling which is enclosed on all sides by solid walls or windows … which extend from floor to ceiling.”
Club Soda has hired Fort Wayne Awning to produce clear temporary panels for the second-floor deck attached to the business’ 19th-century brick building, covering two or even all three open sides. With the effects of wind and cold minimized, three gas heaters able to heat a 20-foot radius should keep the space bearable in all but the coldest weather, owners hope.
And he continues:
But if restaurants and bars could turn the outdoors into the indoors, what (except for costing businesses lots of money) has the ordinance accomplished? Customers will still be smoking, and employees will still be serving them — in an area separated from the non-smoking section.
Sounds a lot like the city’s old smoking ordinance to me.
Read his whole column and wonder: What was the point of the ordinance again? Did the city really think people were just going to stop smoking — or were smokers just supposed to stop eating out?
Shoving people outside to smoke when other solutions are possible is just not hospitable.
— Jon Swerens