By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com January 15 2003 1:00 AM ET
When asked in a recent survey whether they would prefer smoke-free bars and clubs, 59% of adults nationwide, including those who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered, said they preferred a smoke-free environment. According to these latest survey results, released by Witeck-Combs Communications and Harris Interactive, when asked if they would be willing to pay an additional cover charge for their favorite bar or club to be smoke-free, 70% of gay respondents who indicated that they prefer smoke-free bars and clubs said they would be willing to pay more for that environment. In contrast, only 52% of heterosexual respondents who indicated the same preference said they would be willing to pay an additional cover charge.
"The good news is, lesbians and gays seem willing to put their money where their mouths are when it comes to eliminating smoke in bars and clubs not yet covered by smoke-free laws," said Colleen Dermody, vice president of Witeck-Combs Communications. "The bad news is that 34% of gays are still smoking cigarettes despite 2001 survey results which showed 98% of gay smokers and tobacco chewers understand that smoking increases their risk of lung cancer and heart disease. They know smoking is unhealthy, but, according to these latest results, a third of them continue to smoke."