Smokers need not apply to Columbus, Toledo casinos

DAYTON, Ohio - All bets are off for smokers hoping to land a job with the new Ohio casinos in Columbus and Toledo.

Developer Penn National Gaming Inc. plans to screen applicants for nicotine and will disqualify those who test positive. The Dayton Daily News reports ( ) that could include not only smokers but also those who chew tobacco or use nicotine patches.

Thousands of hospitals and other employers now have bans on hiring smokers, to hold down health care costs and promote a healthy workforce. Hollywood Casino Columbus general manager Ameet Patel says Penn National's policy for the Ohio casinos represents a big change for an industry that counts many smokers among its customer base.

He says the policy will be enforced after employment through random nicotine testing.

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