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The Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch - Sleepy Eye, MN
  • SE resident meets with Senator Dahms at State Capitol

  • Sleepy Eye resident Ann Christensen joined more than 170 advocates at the Minnesota State Capitol this week to discuss two key proposals with lawmakers: making Minnesota’s foster homes smoke-free, and introducing common-sense regulations on e-cigarettes.
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  • Sleepy Eye resident Ann Christensen joined more than 170 advocates at the Minnesota State Capitol this week to discuss two key proposals with lawmakers: making Minnesota’s foster homes smoke-free, and introducing common-sense regulations on e-cigarettes.
     
    The bill affecting foster homes would add smoke-free environments to a checklist of health and safety standards for foster care. There is no safe level of secondhand smoke – especially for children, whose bodies are still developing. It is a known cause of SIDS, respiratory infections, asthma attacks and ear infections and nearly 80 percent of foster children in the United States already have at least one chronic medical condition.
     
    A recent study released by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota showed 93 percent of Minnesotans support smoke-free foster care. This bill will be discussed on the House and Senate floors in coming weeks.
     
    Another key piece of legislation would restrict the use of e-cigarettes in indoor public places. The legislation would also help protect kids by keeping e-cigarettes behind the counter and penalizing retailers who sell them to minors.
     
    According to the same Blue Cross and Blue Shield poll, 79 percent of Minnesotans support including e-cigarettes in the Freedom to Breathe Act, which banned smoking in workplaces, including bars and restaurants. The pending e-cigarette legislation will be discussed on the House and Senate floors in coming weeks as well.
     

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