US: Smokers protected in more states than LGBT workers

Katie Dupere July 14, 2014
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More states have anti-discrimination laws for employees who smoke than LGBT workers.

Vox reports that 29 states protect tobacco smokers from workplace discrimination, meaning they cannot be terminated or refused employment because they smoke.

Only 21 states have some form of LGBT employee protections on the books.

Eighteen states protect employees on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, while an additional three only protect based on sexual orientation.

Seventeen states explicitly protect smokers, while 12 protect employees who use a lawful product or engage in lawful activities outside the workplace.

Vox reports that research done at Ohio State University found smokers cost employers nearly $6,000 more a year than non-smokers due to smoke breaks and additional health-care expenses, meaning that laws protecting smokers may actually hinder businesses financially.

More: Americas, Discrimination, Employment, employment discriminiation, smoking, US, worker's protection

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