YONKERS, N.Y. – Yonkers is looking to snuff out smoking at school bus stops.
Mayor Mike Spano announced Wednesday the launch of the city’s newest wellness campaign, “Pledge For Healthy School Bus Stops.” The goal is to encourage adults not to smoke at bus stops while sending their children off to school, he said.
“There is no debating the hazards of second-hand smoke to our children’s health, especially to those with medical conditions,” the mayor said. “If we really are committed to protecting the health and well-being of our children, then preventing their exposure to the harmful effects of smoking should be a no-brainer for all residents.”
Spano announced the initiative, which last week was passed as a resolution by the City Council, Wednesday outside School 13 on McLean Avenue. There he was joined by Danielle Eaton, president of the Yonkers Council of Parents Teacher Associations, and members of the PTA’s Health and Wellness Committee.
“The Yonkers Council of PTA/PTSAs stands with the Mayor and City Council today in support of this resolution banning smoking from all school bus stops and any efforts to ensure the health and well-being of our children,” Eaton said.
More than 50 percent of children are exposed to second hand every year, according to the Center for Disease Control. Complications from inhaling the smoke can include ear infections, more frequent and severe asthma attacks and bronchitis or pneumonia, the CDC said.
As part of the Pledge for Healthy School Bus Stops, residents are encouraged to visit the city’s website or Facebook page to submit an online pledge to refrain from smoking at school bus stops in the presence of children.
Superintendent of Schools Bernard Pierorazio joined the mayor in urging residents to take part in the program.
“This initiative provides each citizen with a simple, but effective, way to help our children. We encourage everyone to support the campaign,” he said.
Smokers and non-smokers alike said Wednesday they too were behind the city’s initiative.
“It seems like a common sense thing – not to smoke at a bus stop,” parent Peter Rubin said. “But it’s a good reminder. I don’t see why anyone would have a problem with it.”