Today marks the 10th anniversary of the Smoke-Free Air Act, which as Mayor Bloomberg predicted, was not the end of NYC's hospitality, restaurant and tourism industries. It seems fitting that Starbucks is choosing this moment to enact a new smoking policy themselves: as of Saturday, patrons will no longer be allowed to smoke within 25 feet of any Starbucks location.
Starbucks spokeswoman Jaime Lynn Riley told reporters that the intent is to expand the indoor no-smoking policy to the outdoor seating areas—however, even if a location doesn't have an outdoor sitting area, the rule will still apply. So if you're smoking right now, please extinguish your cigarette—it's a pretty safe bet you're outside a Starbucks.
Some Starbucks aficionados are calling the company out for hypocrisy for banning smoking... but not guns: "That Starbucks would take such a position after so loudly deciding not to ban people with guns from its stores because the company said it would follow local laws seems to be the height of hypocrisy," wrote George Edmonson on Starbucks Gossip. "Apparently, the company is scared of the NRA but doesn't fear smokers." Well, there are some former smokers who they obvious do feel a kinship to, at the very last.