Corrective Statements Finally Starting After 11 Year Delay
Big Tobacco Lied
Judge Gladys Kessler issued her ruling in the Department of Justice Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) racketeering case against tobacco companies on August 17, 2006. One of the critical remedies in the case called for the tobacco companies to issue Corrective Statements about what the industry knew about cigarettes and failed to disclose to the public. The industry’s lawyers have made multiple appeals over the last 11 years to oppose the requirement for Corrective Statements, but finally ceased doing so this year. We will see the first of the Corrective Statements in newspapers and on tobacco company websites in November 2017. ANR has served as one of six public health intervenors in the case.
Tobacco companies lied for decades about the health risks of secondhand smoke.
Now they will finally have to make corrective statements 11 years after being found in violation of federal racketeering laws. Text of Corrective Statements.
Big Tobacco’s efforts to raise doubt through junk science about the health research on secondhand smoke needlessly led to many preventable deaths through delayed policy change in communities and states across the country.
Today, millions of people are still exposed to cigarette smoke inside buildings in part due to the legacy of Big Tobacco’s fake science and talking points which promoted air curtains, HVAC systems, smoking rooms, and other tricks to keep smoking indoors despite the health hazards.
Let’s be clear. There is no safe level of exposure to secondhand smoke.
Ventilation systems, smoking rooms, and smoking sections do not protect people from the deadly health hazards of secondhand smoke. People working in casinos, bars, or elsewhere in the hospitality sector shouldn’t have to get sick from breathing at work. See the press release here from ANR and other intervenors in the Department of Justice racketeering case.
Casinos that falsely claim that their HVAC systems or smoking areas address secondhand smoke should be mindful of the liability implications of knowingly serving up toxic air to employees and customers. The only known way to prevent the health hazards of secondhand smoke is with a smokefree environment.