San Francisco strikes chewing tobacco from playing fields

AP News
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Posted: Apr 21, 2015 7:07 PM

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Supervisors unanimously voted Tuesday to ban chewing tobacco from sports playing fields in the city, including AT&T Park.

San Francisco Supervisor Mark Farrell said the proposal specifically targets baseball, which has a long history of players masticating and spitting tobacco juice on the field. He said kids shouldn't get the idea that they need to use tobacco to be a great ballplayer.

The city currently prohibits cigarette and cigar smoking at sports arenas, fields, parks and stadiums. Tuesday's ordinance adds smokeless tobacco —moist inhalable snuff and chewing tobacco —to the list. AT&T Park is home to the San Francisco Giants, last year's World Series champions.

Minor league baseball has banned chewing tobacco since the early 1990s, but it's still a negotiable contract item with Major League Baseball players.

The ordinance, which needs another formal vote by the board next week, would take effect Jan. 1.