How to Slash Halloween Fatalities Among Kids

Parental Smoking More Dangerous Than Cars And Tainted Treats Combined
WASHINGTON - Oct. 27, 2022 - PRLog -- This Halloween millions of parents will all warn young children about the dangers from eating candy which hasn't been inspected, or of being hit by a car, but most will fail to warn them about the biggest risk - one which will kill more kids this Halloween than all of the others combined: smoking in their presence, says public interest law professor John Banzhaf.

In contrast to other dangers, as the New York Times reported, "at least 6,200 children die each year [17/day] in the United States because of their parents' smoking . . .   More young children are killed by parental smoking than by all unintentional injuries combined," and that parental smoking annually causes over five million serious ailments which add almost five billion dollars to the nation's medical expense costs.

Even if children are not present in a home when a parent smokes, the residue is carcinogenic and thus can ultimately cause death, as well as trigger serious respiratory distress in children exposed to it who have asthma, allergies, and a variety of other conditions.

The dangers and medical problems caused by tobacco smoke residue are so serious that even adults have been held to be entitled to legal protection from exposure to it in the workplace.

Despite all the warnings and educational messages, children are still more heavily exposed to secondhand smoke than adults. Thus almost 4 out of every 10 U.S. children aged 3-11 are exposed to tobacco smoke pollution, primarily in their own homes by parents or guardians.

Also, residences and other indoor areas where smoking occurs even when children are not present — including, for example, day care centers — may contain large deposits of tobacco smoke residue which can quickly trigger breathing problems in young children, and has also been proven to cause cancer.

They should also stay away from a parent, grandparent, or other adult while they are smoking, and avoid being anywhere with smoking sections – and in cars when adults are smoking – where exposure is far higher.

Banzhaf notes that smoking around a child has even been considered as a factor in child custody disputes in most states, and a reason to limit the rights of the smoking parent. He also warns that some parents have actually lost custody for deliberately exposing their children to this carcinogenic toxic substance.

So, let's let children enjoy Halloween!

But help keep them safe from tobacco smoke and vaping, not just cars and tainted candy, Banzhaf suggests.   @profbanzhaf

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