Florida county accused of violating Constitution with anti-tobacco hiring policy



When Flagler County's Board of Commissioners in Florida voted unanimously last month to ban job seekers who use tobacco -- even outside of work -- they may have bitten off more than they care to chew. 

American Civil Liberties Union of Florida says Flagler County's tobacco ban likely is unconstitutional. 

"There's certainly Fourth Amendment privacy problems with this policy," Baylor Johnson, the ACLU of Florida's media relations manager, told Florida Watchdog in a phone interview. 

The civil liberties organization successfully challenged an overly broad drug testing policy in Defuniak Springs earlier this year. 

But testing for nicotine as a pre-condition of government employment could present an even clearer constitutional violation. 

As Florida Watchdog reported last week, Flagler County's zero-tolerance tobacco ban is much more than a smoke-free workplace policy. 

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