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Religious community gets involved in smoking debate

Columbus religious leaders are getting behind the effort to ban smoking in bars, restaurants and bowling alleys. At a prayer breakfast Wednesday morning, religious leaders joined with anti-smoking advocates to call for a no-vote on the Can the Ban initiative slated for this November's ballot.

For these religious leaders, the connection between faith and non-smoking is easy to draw. What's good for the body is good for the soul. They cite statistics that say more than 18,000 Ohioans die from tobacco related diseases each year, and say it's their duty to get the word out about the hazards.

Charles Booth is pastor of the Mount Olivet Baptist Church where the event was held. He says Columbus's faith community plans to campaign against the ballot initiative that would halt the city's indoor smoking ban.