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January 03, 2020

U-Haul adopts policy to stop hiring smokers, e-cigarette users in 21 states

The truck rental company wants its employees to be nicotine-free

Wellness UHaul
U-Haul truck lineup Source/U-Haul

U-Haul International is adopting a policy to cease hiring people who smoke cigarettes or use other nicotine products, including e-cigarettes, in an attempt to create a healthier corporate culture. The policy will take affect in 21 states, including Pennsylvania and Delaware.

U-Haul International soon will stop interviewing and hiring people who smoke cigarettes or use other nicotine products, including e-cigarettes, as part of an effort to promote healthier lifestyles among its employees.

The nicotine-free hiring policy will take effect on Feb. 1 in the 21 states where it is lawful for employers to decline to hire people who use nicotine products. Both Pennsylvania and Delaware are among them. New Jersey is not.

"Nicotine products are addictive and pose a variety of serious health risks," U-Haul Chief of Staff Jessica Lopez said in a statement. "This policy is a responsible step in fostering a culture of wellness at U-Haul, with the goal of helping our team members on their health journey."

The Phoenix, Arizona-based truck rental company employs more than 30,000 people in the United States and Canada. The company also is building a 54,208-square-foot conference and fitness center at its headquarters as part of its mission to establish a healthy corporate culture.

U-Haul encourages its employees against using nicotine products by waiving a wellness fee they would otherwise pay, according to the Arizona Republic. But it does not force tobacco users to pay a health care insurance premium.

People applying for U-Haul jobs in the 21 affected states will be notified of the nicotine-free hiring policy on applications, the newspaper reported. Applicants also will be questioned about their nicotine use.

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