The Board of Health in Westminster, Massachusetts is proposing a ban of ALL tobacco products and electronic cigarettes, electronic cigars and electronic pipes. Under the Massachusetts statutes, the local board of health is authorizes to adopt “reasonable” regulation to protect the health of citizens.
A hearing will be held on November 12, 2014.
Westminster, Massachusetts is home to 7,000 residents over 37.3 square miles and was founded in 1737.
UPDATE 11/12: The Westminster Board of Health shut down yesterdays hearing after 4 speakers, when chairwoman Andrea Crete deemed that the crowd had become unruly by applauding speakers they agreed with. Chairwoman Crete decided to turn her back on Freedom of Speech by stating their applause were disrespectful to the board.
The Board of Health will no longer hear speakers, and have instead instructed those with an opinion on the ban to do so via writing. The committee of three is expected to make a ruling on December 1st.
There is a lot more at stake here other than smoking has the board has taken on a tyrannical approach by not allowing a public hearing in an attempt to force their beliefs upon the public.
UPDATE: 11/20: The Westminster Board of Health voted 2-1 to drop the proposal at it’s regular meeting, with Board chairwoman casting her vote to keep it alive. The three person committee voted 2-1.
According to one board member, “The town is not in favor of the proposal, and therefore I am not in favor of the proposal”.
The proposal which drew national attention was defeated by a community that came together to say enough is enough. Smokers and Non-Smokers have spoken that it is not the place of the government to control our lives.
One community in Union Springs, NY is still looking to ban tobacco, lets hope this one does not get ignored.