Virginia County May Force Employees Into Classes to Quit Smoking

County attorney says it's legal, though it can't actually force them to quit


Fairfax County can legally force its employees to enroll in classes that help them stop smoking, the county's attorney said.

County Attorney David Bobzien offered that finding to the County Board of Supervisors, whose members wanted to know whether they could force county employees to stop smoking or refuse to hire someone who smokes as a way to reduce the county's soaring health care costs.

Bobzien concluded that the county can make employees attend smoking cessation classes "just as it may require its employees to take training on other topics." But it can't require them to pass the class and actually quit.