If smokers get work breaks, non-smokers want time off: study

Smokers say that extra vacation time would be a great incentive to get them to give up cigarettes.

The ongoing battle between smokers and non-smokers apparently extends to the workplace.

More than 40 percent of non-smokers believe they should get three to five extra vacation days per year, to compensate for all the time their smoking co-workers spend on cigarette breaks, a recent survey says.

A nearly equal percentage of smokers, however, believes that non-smokers are not entitled to any additional vacation days.

The average worker who smokes spends the equivalent of about six days per year on cigarette breaks, Joe Mercurio, project manager for the study, told USA Today.

The average worker who smokes spends the equivalent of about six days per year on cigarette breaks.

But that average varies greatly by industry.

For example, workers in tech, retail, finance and insurance spend the equivalent of more than 20 days per year on cigarette breaks, the report says, while workers in real estate spent about 5 days per year on a smoke break.

Smokers, however, said that extra vacation time would be a great incentive to get them to give up cigarettes. Women would quit for an extra 11 days off, while men would quit for an extra 12 days of leisure.

The study was commissioned by Halo, a maker of electronic cigarettes.

Other findings, according to the survey:

— Smoking-related illnesses cost businesses more than $156 billion in lost productivity.

Smoking-related illnesses cost businesses more than $156 billion in lost productivity.

— The vast majority of workers believe that employers should offer financial incentives for workers to give up cigarettes – ranging from 93.5 percent of workers in arts and entertainment to 68.3 percent of employees in finance and insurance.

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