Attitudes: Assessing Changes in Attitudes Regarding the Indoor Public Smoking Ban in San Marcos, Texas
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Purpose. The purpose of this study is to assess changes in attitudes regarding the indoor public smoking ban implemented in San Marcos, Texas on June 1, 2014. Method. Survey Research was the method used in this study. Surveys were distributed by hand to bar patrons, employees, and owners asking their opinions on issues related to the hypotheses of this study. Results. Among employees/owners the level of support for the ban increased after it was implemented. The findings also show that a public indoor smoking ban does not negatively affect bar revenues. Among employees/owners there was no significant difference in the level of support between smokers and nonsmokers prior to the ban but smokers did become more supportive following its implementation. Among patrons, attitudes regarding the ban improved after its implementation. Following the ban's implementation, differences in gender and race were not significant predictors regarding level of support but education level was significant with those having higher levels of educational attainment being more supportive. Conclusion. Without the existence of a smoking policy; employees/owners tend to simply accept the status quo. They accept the fact that there is no smoking policy and are indifferent to the proposal of a smoking policy. Smoking addiction also perhaps plays a role in the continued level of nonsupport among smokers. Educational attainment also plays a role in the acceptance of public indoor smoking bans with those having more education becoming more supportive after the ban's implementation.