Reports | 02.23.2017

2016 Hospitality Survey

Smoke- and Vape-Free Policies in Wyoming’s Dining and Lodging Establishments

Conclusions and Recommendations

In the absence of a statewide smoke-free indoor air law covering hospitality businesses, customers and employees in Wyoming generally depend on the policies of individual businesses to protect their health. Partial exceptions to this general rule include the six Wyoming towns with smoke-free indoor air laws that cover customers and employees in bars and restaurants (Burlington, Casper, Cheyenne, Evanston, Laramie, and Mountain View) and the three towns with smoke-free indoor air laws that cover restaurants but not bars (Afton, Green River, and Rock Springs). None of these laws require all indoor areas of lodging businesses, including all guest rooms, to be smoke-free. Only Laramie’s law specifically addresses secondhand ENDS aerosol.

Most Wyoming fast food and full service restaurants without bars have policies (including voluntary written policies and compliance with local smoke-free indoor air laws) that protect their customers and employees while in indoor areas. These policies are less common for restaurants with attached bars and less common still in stand-alone bars. When these written policies exist, they frequently allow smoking in outdoor dining areas and other outdoor areas. Written vape-free policies are less common than smoke-free policies, but they follow similar patterns. Few businesses have vape-free policies without also having smoke-free policies.

Written smoke-free indoor air policies typically cover indoor common areas and indoor employee-only areas. Allowing smoking or vaping in at least some guest rooms is a relatively common practice in Wyoming, although this concession is becoming less popular nationally. In 2016, 85% of hotels nationwide were smoke-free, including all guest rooms (American Hotel & Lodging Association, 2016). As with dining establishments, vape-free policies are less common, focus more on indoor areas, and rarely exist in the absence of smoke-free policies.

Wyomingites and visitors would benefit most from increased smoke- and vape-free policies in lodging establishments, especially increases in the number of establishments that are completely smoke-free indoors, including all guest rooms. When considering dining and drinking establishments, Wyomingites and visitors would benefit most from an increase in the number of smoke-free bars and full service restaurants with attached bars.