MDA conducting downtown smoking survey
The McMinnville Downtown Association and Yamhill County Health and Human Services have teamed up to conduct surveys to gather public opinion on tobacco use and secondhand smoke in the downtown core area.
There are two online surveys available, one for the general public.
The public survey includes questions about experience with and attitude toward secondhand smoke and cigarette butt litter downtown. It asks residents if they would visit the same, more or less, if downtown tobacco use was prohibited and the degree to which they might support a ban.
The business survey includes similar questions, framed from a merchant and employee perspective.
The surveys were designed by Blake Densley and Jennifer Johnson of County Health. They were reviewed and approved by the Oregon Health Authority.
In addition, County Health employees plan to conduct some in-person surveys downtown. Once all of the data has been collected, they will compile the results.
“Oregon’s Clean Air Act is critical in preventing non-smokers from being exposed to secondhand smoke in all parts of our community,” said Cassie Sollars, manager for the MDA. “But downtown, where shops, restaurants, wine tasting rooms and offices are so close together, it’s nearly impossible to use tobacco products and stay the required 10 feet away from doors or windows.”
The survey will allow MDA to measure the level of support the community has for making some locations and events tobacco-free.
“We plan to use the compiled data to formulate smoking policy downtown,” said Sollars. “Other Oregon communities have enacted policies anywhere from smoke-free events to completely smoke-free downtowns. We don’t know where we’ll land on that spectrum, but we need the data to make an informed decision.”
To access the survey for the general public, go to www.surveygizmo.com/s3/1674406/Yamhill-Downtown-Tobacco-Free-Policy-Assessment.
To take the survey for businesses, go to www.surveygizmo.com/s3/1699870/Yamhill-Downtown-Tobacco-Free-Policy-Assessment-Business.
Surveys may also be accessed through the county website at www.co.yamhill.or.us or MDA website at www.downtownmcminnville.com.