Smoking en Drive To Ban Smoking Kicks Off In New Orleans <p>A drive kicks off this week to ban smoking in New Orleans bars.</p><p>Councilwoman Latoya Cantrell is backing the idea. She says the change would benefit local businesses.</p><p>“This has been going on across the country for over a decade now," she said. "And so we have real facts that it is not a negative impact on our businesses. Actually revenues increase. And it’s cheaper to maintain a bar or lounge that is smoke free than one that is not.” &nbsp;</p><p>Cantrell says the effort will begin at various venues this week that are now voluntarily smoke-free.&nbsp;</p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:06:17 +0000 Eileen Fleming 65019 at Senators Reject Bill Removing Smoker Protection <p>BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) &mdash; A bid to repeal a law that bans employers from discriminating against smokers has failed to win traction in the Legislature.</p><p>The repeal, sought by hospitals and health care leaders, was narrowly rejected in a 3-2 vote by the Senate labor committee amid concerns it could lead to widespread firings by employers.</p><p>More than 20 years ago, legislators passed a law protecting smokers from workplace discrimination.</p> Fri, 27 Apr 2012 15:29:06 +0000 The Associated Press 9601 at