If being healthy is not enough reason for you to quit smoking, how about being wealthy?
A new study, published in the journal Internal Medicine, says that unemployed smokers are less likely to be hired and more likely to earn less compared to non-smokers.
In a report from Reuters, Judith Prochaska of the Stanford Prevention Research Center in California and lead author of the study said,"The health harms of smoking have been established for over 50 years, and now evidence is accumulating that smoking can hurt your success in the workforce and perhaps even lower your pay."
For the study, researchers recruited 251 unemployed people in the San Francisco Bay area between 2013 and 2015. Among them, 131 are daily smokers and the remaining 120 are non-smokers.
After a year, 217 participants reported back to the researchers. The result showed that 60 out of the 108 non-smokers or 56 percent were re-employed while only 29 out of 109 smokers or 27 percent were hired again. This suggests that non-smokers have 30 percent more chance of re-employment than smokers.
Even after taking into account influencing factors of employment such as housing, transportation, drug history and criminal records, non-smokers are still most likely to have a job than smokers with a 24 percent difference.
The researchers also found out in their study that smokers that are hired earn an hourly wage of $15.10, $5 less compared to the $20.27 hourly income of non-smokers. This means that there's an $8,300 deficit annually in an average of 32 hours per week between smokers and non-smokers.
NBC News reported that many employers require their employees to pledge or even prove that they are not smoking. Prochaska also added that job seekers who smell of tobacco during interviews are putting themselves at a great disadvantage for bagging the job.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 17 out of 100 U.S. or more than 40 million are smokers. Smoking is also accountable for one out of every five deaths annually. That is more than 480,000 U.S adults dying every year due to smoking.
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