The rift between smokers and non-smokers about the smoking breaks is very normal in every organisation. Non-smokers always talk about the extra time smokers take off from work, which they are deprived. Some employees at a firm in Tokyo decided to take the issue with the management. After citing the injustice the non-smoker employees of Marketing firm Piala Inc’ were awarded six extra days of paid leave each year in comparison to the smoker employees. Company spokesperson Hirotaka Matsushima told The Telegraph, “One of our non-smoking staff put a message in the company suggestion box earlier in the year saying that smoking breaks were causing problems”.

Piala Inc’ is situated on the 29th floor of a multistory building and one smoking break at least lasts for 15 minutes as smoking is not allowed on the same floor and the employee has to go to the basement to light a cigarette. The company’s CEO Takao Asuka decided to give non-smoking employees extra time off to compensate, Mr. Matsushima added. The company also believes that the extra leaves will lure people to quit smoking. The company spokesperson also said that more than four people have quit smoking in order to avail the leaves after the implementation of the policy.

In terms of cigarette consumption, Japan stands on number 21. In July, this year Japan made it clear that it will impose strict measures on smoking in public because of the upcoming Olympic Games in the country. Cigarette smoking poses a serious threat to one’s health. In recent times, the hazard has claimed lakhs of lives across the globe. According to a recent survey, smoking is responsible for more than 11% deaths in the world. India is amongst the four countries with maximum cigarettes consumption.

We wish Indian firms also take a cue from the Japanese firm and introduce similar guidelines.