BennettComm4.27.15SPRINGFIELD- Residue from cigarette smoke toxins that linger on surfaces long after cigarettes have been extinguished is called thirdhand smoke. Currently, children in commercial and home day cares could possibly be exposed to it.  

Today, State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) advanced legislation to protect children from the dangers of smoke while spending time in daycares.   

“Due to babies, toddlers and children’s curious nature, they are more susceptible to the deadly effects of thirdhand smoke. They are more likely to be crawling on the floor and putting things in their mouths which exposes them to tobacco residue,” said Bennett. “It’s our duty as adults to take care of children and put protections in place to protect their well-being.”

Studies have shown that toxins can linger for days, weeks or even months after a cigarette has been smoked. Harmful particles can remain on floors, counters, furniture and other surfaces and fabrics.

“As a father of two young children, I see my children crawl on rugs, fall asleep almost anywhere and teethe on anything they can get their mouths on. These are easily places that can be home for tobacco toxins,” said Bennett. “The new guidelines will provide our children with helpful safeguards to lead healthy lives.”

Currently, smoking is permissible in designated areas or while children are not present. House Bill 3531 puts regulations in place to prohibit smoking in day care centers whether or not children are present.

HB 3531 passed the Senate’s Committee on Public Health and now moves to the full Senate for consideration.

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