Do you have a job? Do you smoke? If your answer to both questions is yes, you may have to choose which you want to keep. These days, there are some employees who could lose their jobs if they smoke and lie about it. Additionally, smokers who are looking for a job may have a serious disadvantage as many employers now look into this as part of the hiring process.
A study has also discovered that as salary increases, smoking decreases. Therefore, those with low salaries may be prone to smoking. In fact, smokers who have low income in New York spend a quarter of their salary on cigarettes.
Smoking Can Harm Your Job and Pay
A Stanford University professor says that some smokers did secure a job, but unfortunately, they do not receive the same amount in their paycheck as those who don’t smoke. Based on Judith Prochaska’s research, she announced that the pay difference is about five dollars per hour on average. This means over $8,300 per year. But why is this so? A number of factors can explain the reason for the pay difference and among the important ones include:
- Smoking means higher healthcare costs
- Smokers may have more sick days than those who don’t
- People who smoke also have more downtime than those who don’t
Prochaska also said that there are studies in the past that showed there is a link between unemployment and smoking. This new study though, which was conducted in California, focused on 251 unemployed individuals: 131 of which were all smokers and the remaining didn’t smoke. These people tried to look for a job since 2013 up to 2015. For more than a year, the researchers learned that 56% of the nonsmokers got hired and only 27% of the smokers got the job. The smokers who had a job received $15.10 per hour of work, while those who didn’t smoke received $20.27.
More Reasons Why Smoking Can Cost You a Good Salary
If you haven’t stopped smoking yet, here are more ways it can impact your employment status:
- May Cause You to Be Unproductive: Studies have shown that smokers are less productive than those who don’t smoke.
- More Sick Days: Smokers are more likely to call in sick because of the health problems linked to smoking.
- Viewed as High Risk: Many employers view people who smoke as high risk for absenteeism, costly productivity losses, and early retirement.
If you smoke at your workplace, you could also be putting your coworkers at risk. There are studies who claim that employees exposed to smokers at work have 17% risk of getting lung cancer.