No more chewing tobacco for major league baseball players

On Tuesday the Los Angeles City Council passed a motion to ban the use of chewing tobacco and snuff from all sports venues in the city.

The vote, passed 14-0, was introduced back in June by Councilman Jose Huizar and called on the city attorney to write up an ordinance that would cover all venues in the city where any organized sport, amateur or professional, is played, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The ordinance also includes Dodger Stadium which would apply to the players and fans alike.

A final vote will be taken on the measure once the city attorney’s office has finished the ordinance that lawmakers are requesting for in the next 30 days. At this time, it was reported the ordinance would be implemented by January.

“Today, the city of Los Angeles joins the ranks of San Francisco and Boston in what is becoming a national effort to knock tobacco out of the park,” Huizar said in a statement. “Smokeless tobacco use in the great American pastime is way past its time. The time to act is now to save others, particularly our young people, from an extremely addictive and potentially deadly product.”

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee put an ordinance into effect earlier this year that eliminated smokeless tobacco at the city’s athletic fields which put it on the map for being the first city in the nation to put forth the strict restriction. Following in their steps was Boston who made a similar legislation just last week. Both of the ordinances are expected to be put into place before the 2016 baseball season.

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids played a video on Tuesday before the vote that highlighted the overwhelming success of the “Knock Tobacco Out of the Park” campaign which included the support from public health advocates, little league players as well as a number of other supporters.

“With today’s vote, the Los Angeles City Council has provided tremendous momentum to take tobacco out of baseball once and for all,” said Matthew L. Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.

The original motion from Huizar only included baseball stadiums. But as of Tuesday, the request was amended to include all sports venues in the city.

“Baseball players have been endorsing chewing tobacco for decades and decades,” Councilman Paul Koretz said before the vote. “It’s time to stop this. I think with this action today we’ll take a giant step in the right direction.”

The proposed ordinance is also getting strong support from the L.A. Dodgers.



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