Should Smoking Be Allowed at the VA?

Legislation has been introduced to prohibit smoking at VA facilities.

Recently introduced legislation would ban smoking at the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Introduced by Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), the bill (S. 2106) would “repeal an antiquated 1992 law that requires the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) to furnish and maintain designated indoor or outdoor smoking areas,” as the Senator writes in his press release on the bill.

Durbin claims the legislation will help save lives, stating, “The vast majority of veterans enrolled in the VA health care system are non-smokers. I care deeply about the health and well-being of every veteran, and our bill ensures that those at our VHA facilities are protected from the deadly consequences of tobacco use and secondhand smoke. This bill will help save the lives of some of America’s heroes.”

He also noted in his press release that the majority of federal government buildings are smoke-free and that outdoor smoking areas are difficult to maintain and cost the VA more than $1.2 million annually.

Should smoking be banned at VA facilities? Feel free to weigh in in the comments below.

About the Author

Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of He has over 20 years of combined experience in media and government services, having worked at two government contracting firms and an online news and web development company prior to his current role at FedSmith.