PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A controversy has been ignited over people lighting up near Allegheny General Hospital.
Smokers banned from the hospital grounds are crossing the street to smoke. Neighbors want the hospital to take action, and the smokers say they’re caught in the middle.READ MORE: Death Of Woman Found On South Side Ruled Homicide
On Jan. 1, the hammer came down on hospital employee and visitor smokers alike.
The policy says, “There are no areas where smoking is permitted on or adjacent to AHN facilities and work sites.”
“It’s a policy that’s consistent with our policy of health and wellness,” says Dan Laurent, of Allegheny Health Network.
But what it’s done is send smokers to the doorsteps of nearby homes.
“It’s just every day, all the time, people smoking in front of our home and it fills our home with smoke,” says Randy, a nearby homeowner. “It smells like a bar in our house.”
Homeowners have even put up signs, which are ignored.READ MORE: DEP Blames Fungicide For Thousands Of Dead Fish In Chartiers Creek
“If I lived here, I’d be highly upset,” says Jodi Walters, of Steubenville.
KDKA’s John Shumway: “So, if you feel that way, why are you outside their apartment?”
Walters: “I take mine and I put it out and I put it in the garbage. But as far as them looking out and seeing me, yea, I feel guilty.”
AHN is hearing the neighbors’ complaints.
“We take them seriously,” said Laurent. “We are communicating with our employees both about the obligation they have to be respectful of our neighbors in this sense, and also there are consequences if they choose not to do so.”
Laurent declined to specify what action the hospital could take. He did say Allegheny Health Network is reviewing the policy to see if changes are needed.MORE NEWS: AHN To Provide Access To COVID-19 Vaccine At Community Events