ACS CAN Asks New Jersey’s Leaders to Ensure That Marijuana Legalization Does Not Undermine New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act

Smoking Must Be Prohibited in Casinos

November 6, 2020

TRENTON, NJ – On Election Day New Jersey voters authorized the legalization of the use of marijuana by those 21 years of age and older.

American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) New Jersey Government Relations Director Michael Davoli released the following statement:

“It is critically important that marijuana legalization does not undermine the New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act. New Jerseyans have the right to breath clean smoke-free air and that includes marijuana. We are calling on New Jersey leaders to strengthen the Smoke-Free Air Act to include marijuana and to prohibit smoking in casinos.

“We must protect the health of all casino employees and patrons by prohibiting smoking including the use of marijuana. We must ensure everyone can breathe smoke-free air while they are working and enjoying all that the casinos offer.

"Smoking marijuana poses significant risks to users and to those nearby. Marijuana smoking affects lung function including inflammation of the large airways, increased airway resistance, and lung hyperinflation. Marijuana smoke contains the same fine particulate matter found in tobacco smoke that can cause heart attacks. Marijuana smoke contains many of the cancer-causing substances found in tobacco smoke.

"The use of marijuana in public places unnecessarily exposes nonusers to marijuana smoke posing potential health risks. Furthermore, permitting the use of marijuana in public could compromise highly effective smoke-free laws. Comprehensive smoke-free laws are effective at protecting nonusers from exposure to secondhand smoke, reducing initiation, especially among youth, and increasing quit attempts by smokers.


“There is now a loophole in New Jersey’s Smoke-Free Air Act that allows smoking in casinos. This puts the health of casino employees at risk just to keep their jobs. We ask Gov. Murphy and the legislature to work together to protect all New Jerseyans and tourists by closing this loophole and prohibiting the use of marijuana wherever smoking is prohibited.”



The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) is making cancer a top priority for public officials and candidates at the federal, state and local levels. ACS CAN empowers advocates across the country to make their voices heard and influence evidence-based public policy change as well as legislative and regulatory solutions that will reduce the cancer burden. As the American Cancer Society’s nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN is critical to the fight for a world without cancer. For more information, visit

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Marc Kaplan
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Albany, NY