If you want a job at the Monterey County Health Department you can either quit smoking or forget about applying. The department’s director sees it both as a cost savings issue and one of leading by example.

Citing statistics from the Bureau of National Affairs, smokers cost employers $1000 more per year than their non-smoking counter parts. They are also more likely to skip work or have accidents on the job.

But when it comes to leading the communities on health issues, the director is quick to point out that no other activity kills as many people as smoking.

From HealthyCal.org:

In Salinas, health officials could soon issue a new warning: Don’t even think of applying for a job at the Monterey County health department or the county hospital, Natividad Medical Center, if you smoke.

Monterey County public health director, Dr. Hugh Stallworth, said staffers are currently drafting a policy that would make the county’s health department the first in the state to hire only non-smokers. It’s a question of walking the health department talk, Stallworth said.

“We teach people how to be healthy. It seems counter to our philosophy, to our mission, to our vision, to hire people who are engaging in many of the practices we consider exquisitely harmful,” Stallworth said. “The activity that kills more people than any other is smoking.”

Read the full article here.