Editorial: Moultrie not hiring tobacco users

Editorial: Moultrie not hiring tobacco users

The City of Moultrie will no longer hire employees who use tobacco.

We have heard from some smokers who ask is it legal for employers to take this position about employees' personal lives?

The short answer is yes, employers can refuse to hire you because you're a smoker, unless you live in one of the 18 states where this is illegal.

City Manager Mike Scott said the City Council made the decision to save money on insurance costs and keep workers healthier.

"In addition in to keeping our employees healthy and hope that it would be cost saving thing too. All those health care claims are paid by the city and the employee," said City Manager Mike Scott.

We totally agree with Mr. Scott. Studies clearly show that smokers take more sick days than their non-smoking co-workers.

They also found that even if a smoker appears to be in relatively good health, he or she will still have higher medical costs than a comparable non-smoker over a three-year period.

The new hiring policy in Moultrie took effect on November 1st. It does not affect current city employees.

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