Turkey - even in tea houses smoking ban is working..

May 5, 2010 - According to survey results recently released by Marmara University patrons of teahouses in Istanbul have been largely content with the indoor smoking ban. Some 70 percent of respondents told researchers they supported the smoking ban.

The survey was conducted in January and February in 18 teahouses in an Istanbul district and solicited the views of 256 patrons, only four of whom were female, according to the National Committee on Cigarettes and Health, or SSUK.

Among unemployed respondents, 80 percent said they supported the ban, while 60 percent of those with jobs expressed support for the ban.

Close to half of the respondents said their pattern of visiting teahouses did not change following the institution of the ban, while 25 percent said they began to frequent these places more often after the smoking ban came into force in all enclosed areas July 19, 2009. Some 97 percent of respondents with what they characterized as a light addiction to smoking expressed support for the ban; only 13 percent of heavy smokers said they support the prohibition.

Pınar Ay, one of the people responsible for the survey, said 17 percent of respondents claimed they quit smoking since the ban went into force, while 24 percent said they had decreased the number of cigarettes they smoke a day.

Among the respondents, 42 percent said they smoke every day while 7 percent said they rarely smoke.

Prime Minister Erdogan has been the driving force behind the success of the country's smoking ban. The World Health Organization (WHO) has recognized Turkey for its efforts to create a smoke-free environment and its successful implementation.

Celal Sezgin, 53, a lawyer registered with the Bursa Bar Association, was murdered in a pub for warning smokers inside about the smoking ban.

Reference: Turkish teahouse patrons support smoking ban, study says, ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News, 5/2/2010.

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