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Smokers, smoke-breaks & the workplace... (1 Viewer)

Moe Maishlish

Supporting Actor
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Mar 30, 1999
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The "Significant Other Workpace Phonecall" thread prompted me to post this...
I work with quite a few people who are regular smokers, and it got me thinking the other day about the amount of time that they get as smoke-breaks.
Let's assume that, on average, a regular smoker will go for three cigarette breaks throughout the regular 8 hr. workday (not counting lunchtime of course). It would be safe to assume then that each smokebreak lasts about 5 minutes.
So that's one 15 minute smokebreak total per workday.
For a five day workweek, that works out to 15x5 = 1 hour and 15 minutes per week.
My company allows for 3 weeks vacation (15 days), so let's subtract that from the average 52 week year, and say that there are 49 work-weeks in a year. We're not counting holidays here... just a guesstimate.
49 work weeks, time 1 hour and 15 minutes per week comes to 61 hours and 15 minutes, which in terms of 8 hour work-days figures itself to be just over 7 and a half days.
So, based on the guesstimates stated above, smokers get an additional 7 and a half days of vacation over non-smokers.
But I'd trade every last one of those days for a pair of healthy lungs.
;)
Moe.
 

Trace Downing

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It doesn't have to be that way. Let us back into the office to smoke, then we will have the same two breaks a day as you do.;)
 

KyleS

Screenwriter
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Hey now boys lets play nice ;)
It doesn't have to be that way. Let us back into the office to smoke, then we will have the same two breaks a day as you do
Same 2 breaks I do?? Funny thing is here at the company I work we have a lot of people who smoke and they go outside easily 5 times per day and it aint no stinking 5 minutes...Well maybe stinking :)
Seriously it takes them at least 5 minutes to smoke, then time to wash up, and lounging time. I would calculate it at at least 10 minutes per break and they take a lunch on top of that. But if I as a non-smoker just decided to go outside every time they did I would get busted for doing nothing. Go figure hu.
I dont know if this is typical for a lot of companies but would be interested to hear from you guys.
KyleS
 

Matt Stryker

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So that's one 15 minute smokebreak total per workday.
I'm not understanding what keeps non-smokers from taking 15 minutes a day to walk around the building, gaze at wildlife, mail their bills, etc. Its called work/life balance. A lot of workers in the US spend over half their day on the internet doing absolutely zero production, so I'm not sure how the 15 minutes makes a whole lot of difference. We've got a group of people that walk the length of the building (1200ft) every day before and after lunch, and they chat while they do it. As long as you're getting your stuff done and pleasing the customer, no one minds.

Although there are some people I see out there literally half the day. They should just move their desks out onto the smoking deck, that or simply eat nicotine patches.
 

Ron-P

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My gripe. STOP throwing your butts out the car window and use the F'ing ash try.....please.
Peace Out~:D
 

Dave Ringkor

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I take just as many 'smoke breaks' as the smokers in my company. I just don't smoke while I'm out there.
 

KeithH

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My pet peeve with smokers in the workplace is that they must smoke right outside the building, next to the door. So, when people exit the building, they are met by a waft of second-hand smoke. I saw this in grad. school and the two places I have worked since. It would be nice if people had the sense not to smoke right at the door. It seems like common sense to me.
 

Patrick Sun

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One of the frequent smokers at work (everytime I looked outside the main entrance, he was smoking) got the axe last month. I want to believe his abuse of the smoking breaks helped in management's decision to give him the boot. (but it was probably just duplication of services that got him the boot in the merger).

Then again, I take my own non-smoking smoker's breaks in my own little ways that are under the radar, so I'm okay with smokers who tend to stand out in more prominent displays of what is generally perceived as laxitude on the job at the office. (I think I just made up the word "laxitude").
 

Trace Downing

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Same 2 breaks I do?? Funny thing is here at the company I work we have a lot of people who smoke and they go outside easily 5 times per day and it aint no stinking 5 minutes...Well maybe stinking
I think you missed my point. It used to be that we were able to smoke WHILE we're at work, doing work. We weren't the ones who decided it would be better for us to get into the elevator, sign out of the bulding, walk across the street and down the alley from the skyscraper, stand in a secluded, walled in area so noone with sensitive eyes has to look at us to light up and indulge in a drug, that is still legal the last time I looked.:)
I don't mind doing it, really.:D
 

Malcolm R

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I used to work with a woman who smoked quite a lot outside the office (if we went after work to get a drink) and at home. But she never, ever, had a cigarette during the workday, not even at lunch. She controlled the habit, instead of letting it control her. I never even knew she smoked until several months after I'd been there.
I've always thought that non-smokers should join the smokers outside everytime they go out, standing upwind of course, just so everyone would get the same amount of break time. But as Patrick said, there are other ways to compensate. :)
 

KyleS

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Actually I guess that my gripe is that people (depending on your job) usually are supposed to get 2 15minute breaks and 1 30-60 minute lunch break. My problem is when they take 5-6+ breaks per day and take a lunch its bad on productivity which means more work gets thrown my way.

Now if smokers ONLY went out during the 2 15 minute breaks and during lunch to smoke then I wouldnt have a problem with it at all. Its no different then me taking 2 breaks for relaxing and to get a soda then taking a lunch.

Is it hard, for those of you who smoke, to only go out and smoke 3 times during the day? It's really scary how powerful of a drug smoking really is and the type of control it has over a lot (Not all) of the people that smoke.

KyleS
 

Edwin-S

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Seriously it takes them at least 5 minutes to smoke, then time to wash up, and lounging time. I would calculate it at at least 10 minutes per break and they take a lunch on top of that.
------------------------------------------------------------

HMMMM....time to take up smoking. Grass should do nicely.
 

Jay H

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My gripe. STOP throwing your butts out the car window and use the F'ing ash
try.....please.
Peace Out~
:angry: :angry: :angry: My thoughts exactly... I am sooo UP to here freakin watching dimwits do this....
back on topic (sort of) How about the workers whose first thing in the morning is to go to the cafeteria and eat breakfast? Granted, for all I know they could be coming in early and then eating the wonderful cafeteria food (sic!) but I just find it odd... Do they drive to work half asleep??? Yikes!! I like to put food in my belly when I wake up, not having the drive/bike to work on an empty stomach...
Jay
 

Ryan Wright

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so noone with sensitive eyes has to look at us to light up and indulge in a drug
Uh, no. Try sensitive noses, mouths, eyes, lungs, ... I could care less if people smoke. It's not my business, so long as they don't smoke around me. I am allergic to it, for one, and simply can not be around it.

As for the whole getting upset about the time smokers spend smoking - who cares. That is between them and their manager. It's none of my business to worry about what other people do with their time, and I don't have this sense of necessary equality where I feel ripped off if I don't get the same breaks. I figure all that time spent smoking is that much less time smokers will spend on this earth and am quite frankly very thankful that I can spend the time in the office instead of outside, draining the life from my body.
 

Jenna

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Jeanette Howard
Funny thing is here at the company I work we have a lot of people who smoke and they go outside easily 5 times per day and it aint no stinking 5 minutes
I have the same problem where I work - at a Spartanburg S.C. Hospital. The problem is magnified here because when the smoking NIGHT nurses leave the floor -- for an average of 5-6 extra breaks lasting 20-40 minutes each -- they leave their 7-9 patients unattended. What makes matters worse is that these smoking nurses (usually the charge nurses) take all of the nurses aids out to smoke with them, leaving the floor amazingly UNDERSTAFFED. It's only a matter of time until there's a Code Blue on the floor, and one of their patients die because of this.
You know...it's one thing to endanger your own life by smoking, but it's another thing to endanger someone else's.
I've brought this to the attention of our "nurse manager" but instead of doing anything about it, she wrote me up for "not being a team player!" What a bitch!
Had a similar problem last Fall when 3 of the other night nurses used to SLEEP (4 hours at a time) in the empty patient rooms. The nurses were reported, but true to form, the nurse manager did NOTHING. Now, sleeping on the job is cause for losing your license, yet no action was taken against them at all. (I can just imagine how many extra "vacation days" that adds up for the smokers/sleepers on our floor.)
So, needless to say, don't EVER get sick while traveling through Spartanburg! :thumbsdown:
 

Glenn Overholt

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Gee, times have changed I guess. In the U.S. we are allowed, by law, a 15 minute break in the morning and again in the afternoon (10 & 2 usually). If the door is nearby they can puff down 2 of them (but you have to be fast).

If you aren't smoking and don't take those breaks it is only YOUR fault. If they are taking more than the two breaks, (outside of lunch), your manager is not doing his or her job.

Glenn
 

Evan S

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I used to work in a restaurant as a server. I am a non smoker, but most people in that industry do smoke. They take a lot of smoke breaks but are suppose to not take breaks during "hot times" which are between 7 and 9pm for a dinner only restaurant. What gets me is that they would be out there smoking away during all non-hot times. When I would go out there, the manager (who smoked) would say "what are you doing back here"...I said "taking my smoke break". Needless to say that didn't go over very well and it was assumed that only non-smokers had the ability to take these breaks (can you say discrimination?). Anyway, there isn't anything worse than having to serve somebody's food when they are out taking a smoke break. Not only don't I have the time off they do, but I have to pick up their slack. It should be against the law for restaurant servers to smoke while on shift. Just smelling their breath after one of those things was nauseating and I wouldn't want them anywhere near my food if I was a restaurant patron.
 

Dustin D

Stunt Coordinator
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I have had these same problems at my job. Let me line up my points, for better clarity

1. When working part time, we get 1 15 minute break for 4-5 hours or 1 15 minute and 1 30 minute break for 6 or more hours. When a worker works for 2 hours and takes a smoke break, I consider that rude.
2. Smoking right outside - This isn't playing jacks or hopscotch people, some people are allergic to smoke! I myself have severe allergy and sinus problems that make it problematic for me to be around smokers. So, when people can't stand 10 feet away from the door, I consider that offensive.
3. I don't have a problem when people use their breaks properly. That's their use and is up to their discretion. Totally your decision.
4. People aren't allowed to smoke at work because IT IS HAZARDOUS TO THE HEALTH OF THE PEOPLE AROUND YOU! It is totally selfish to expose those around you to carcinogenic chemicals because you need a fix.
5. If you are taking more than your allotted breaks, you are a jerk. Total jerk. Jerk, jerk, jerk. Nobody else to blame but yourself.

And finally, to reiterate, what you do with your breaks is your business. I usually take a lunch break with mine, not that it's easy to eat lunch in 15 minutes. I work at a school with a cafeteria, so sometimes that means getting a grilled cheese and bringing it back to work. If you want to take your allotted breaks to smoke, then that's ok. But please be considerate to your job by only taking your allotted breaks, and please be considerate of those around you by doing it in a fashion that doesn't expose everyone around you to your toxins. I.E. not a foot away from the only exit doorway in a group of 12.

Just my $.02
Dustin
 

JonZ

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"So that's one 15 minute smokebreak total per workday"

Arent you entitled to 2 15 minute breaks a day not including lunch - one in the morning and one in the afternoon.

A ex smoker used to harass me about this all the time."Your out there 4 times a day" I said "I smoke,I come right back in,it takes me 3 mintues to smoke a cigarette.What about your 45 minute walk after lunch and all the time you spend talking to the girls?"
No reply.

I say as long as it doesnt interfere with YOUR work, mind your own business. If it does interfere with your job , then you have the right to gripe.

BTW, Im a ex-smoker.
 

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