At the age of 18, Tammy Brady began working as a casino dealer in Atlantic City. Now 55 years old, she has advanced breast cancer.
Craps dealer at the Tropicana Holly Diebler is battling throat cancer and is now receiving treatment.
They were among numerous casino employees who testified Thursday before two state Assembly committees in favor of a bill that would prohibit smoking in Atlantic City’s nine casinos.
Ban Smoking in Casinos
No vote was taken on the bill, as in an identical hearing on Feb. 13. Gov. Phil Murphy has promised to sign the bill if it passes the Legislature, but thus far, leaders of the Democrat-controlled Assembly and Senate have not committed to allowing the bill to move forward and be voted upon.
According to online slot machines experts, the bill would close a loophole in the state’s 2006 indoor smoking law. That measure was written specifically to exempt casinos from bans on smoking indoors. Currently, smoking is permitted on 25% of casino floors in Atlantic City.
The casino industry opposes a smoking ban, saying it would lose customers and revenue if smoking were banned while still being allowed in casinos in nearby states.
But Andrew Klebenow of Las Vegas-based C3 Gaming, said many casinos that have ended smoking are thriving financially, including casinos near Washington, D.C., and Boston, and in Maryland.