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Saturday, May 25, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Spokane

It’s Simply Not Healthy

By Erin Allison Bruton Special To O

I am a waitress in a small downtown Spokane restaurant. The restaurant has both smoking and non-smoking tables. Recently, I saw something that both saddened and outraged me.

Two young women walked in looking for a smoking table. One was wearing an infant in a front carrier, the other was pushing a boy of maybe 4 or 5 in a wheelchair.

I cleaned off a table and seated them. As I returned with menus, they had both lit up cigarettes. They had lifted the one boy out of the wheelchair and into a highchair. Then, they had placed the infant girl on a chair.

Later I returned to take their orders. The older boy was biting one woman and being angrily scolded. The other woman was holding a pacifier in the baby’s mouth with her left hand and smoking with her right - the hand closest to the boy in the highchair.

I recently moved here from California, where you just can’t smoke anywhere anymore, so I had no idea that mothers could be so stupid!

One: You never place an infant on a chair. Babies of all ages do roll and squirm, and can easily be injured in that situation.

Two: You NEVER smoke around children! EVER!! Are these women just uneducated about the dangers of secondhand smoke? Why would they abuse such beautiful little angels? It broke my heart to stand by and watch such disregard for these children’s safety. I wanted to say something like “How stupid can you be?” But I didn’t say anything because I knew I wouldn’t be able to control my temper.

I would like to see a policy in all eating establishments prohibiting the seating of children in the smoking section. A simple sign could read: “We care about the health of our future. NO children in the smoking section. Period.”

If these parents don’t care enough to protect their babies, somebody must. It’s one more breath of fresh air for the future.

By the way, that incident occurred on my daughter’s first birthday. I’m 19. I’m a young mom with a job and a family. And my eyes are wide open. The lack of education and care for babies shown by some women my age simply appalls me.

MEMO: Your Turn is a feature of the Wednesday and Saturday Opinion pages. To submit a Your Turn column for consideration, contact Rebecca Nappi at 459-5496 or Doug Floyd at 459-5466 or write Your Turn, The Spokesman-Review, P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210-1615.

The following fields overflowed: CREDIT = Erin Allison Bruton Special to Opinion

Your Turn is a feature of the Wednesday and Saturday Opinion pages. To submit a Your Turn column for consideration, contact Rebecca Nappi at 459-5496 or Doug Floyd at 459-5466 or write Your Turn, The Spokesman-Review, P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210-1615.

The following fields overflowed: CREDIT = Erin Allison Bruton Special to Opinion

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