GLEN DALE - Glen Dale became the first municipality in Marshall County to have its city-owned parks designated as being tobacco free.
Signs making this designation were presented to city officials on Wednesday. The signs were erected at the City Park, the Third Street Playground and on the Moundsville-Glen Dale Walking Trail.
The signs were presented by Linda Holmstrand, representing the Smoke-Free West Virginia Initiative and coordinator of the Regional Tobacco Prevention. Marshall County Health Department Administrator Ronda Francis, who is a also a member of the Marshall County Tobacco Prevention Coalition, also took part in the designation ceremony.
Tobacco-free zone signs were erected last week at both the Glen Dale City Park/Pool and at the Third Street Playground. Shown, from left, are
Councilman Elliott Grisell holding his daughter, Zada, Mayor David Blazer holding the
proclamation passed by City Council,
Marshall County Health Department Administrator Ronda Francis, Regional Tobacco Prevention Coordinator Linda Holmstrand and Councilman Wayne Bero.
Photos by Jim Cochran
In order for a city- or county-owned park be designated as a tobacco-free zone, the city council or county commission is required to sign a proclamation, and according to Francis, such a facility needs to be completely tobacco free, which means that the facility cannot have a designated smoking area.
Francis said that the Marshall County Board of Health is the enforcing agency, should someone not abide by the rules of a tobacco free area.
The proclamation passed by the Glen Dale City Council states in part that city officials believe tobacco use in the proximity of children and adults engaging in or watching outdoor recreational activities at city-owned/operated facilities is detrimental to their health and can be offensive to those using such facilities. They also believe by adopting such a proclamation, the city has a unique opportunity create and sustain an environment that supports a non-tobacco norm through a tobacco-free policy, rule enforcement and adult-peer role modeling on city-owned outdoor recreational facilities.
Additionally, the proclamation states cigarettes, once consumed in public spaces, are often discarded on the ground requiring additional maintenance expenses, diminishes the beauty of the city's recreational facilities and poses a risk to toddlers due to ingestion.
In a related matter, Holmstrad stated the American Lung Association will sponsor a Clean Air Healthy Lungs Trail Run/Walk starting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday at Shelter No. 2 at Grand Vue Park.
It is a family oriented tobacco-free event with music, refreshments, health information and more. Persons can register online at www.lunginfo.org/wvtrail run, emailing email@example.com or forms can be obtained at the Marshall County Extension Service office. There is a registration fee with the event benefiting the American Lung Association.
Francis said that the Marshall County Tobacco Prevention Coalition is comprised of individuals living and/or working in Marshall County and include those from businesses, health care, education, non-profit organizations, parents, students and retires.