Fort Worth May Refuse to Hire Smokers
City considers ban
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 17, 2012 12:46 PM CDT
Smokers need not apply? Fort Worth considering a ban on hiring smokers.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – It's one thing for a hospital to refuse to hire smokers—but an entire city? Fort Worth is considering the idea, and there has been—of course—some backlash. "I think it's an infringement on the public's rights to live their life the way they choose to," says the president of the city's employee association, a smoker. Mayor Betsy Price wants to make Fort Worth healthier, and as such is having the human resources department look into new hiring policies—like the one in place at Baylor Healthcare System, which doesn't hire smokers.

Baylor also offers current employees and their spouses access to programs if they want to quit, WFAA reports. One expert says the practice of banning tobacco or smokers is increasing, and employment attorneys say smokers are not a protected group.