In 2008, the World Health Organization implemented a policy wherein they ask all applicants two questions:
- Do you smoke or use tobacco products?
- If you currently smoke or use tobacco products, would you continue to do so if employed by WHO?
If the person answers "yes" to both, they "will not be considered for selection."
The WHO justifies the policy:
Tobacco use is the major preventable cause of death in the world, killing nearly 5 million people annually. On current trends, by 2020, around 10 million people a year will die from tobacco-related diseases in developing countries alone, accounting for more deaths than from malaria, maternal conditions and injuries combined. ... WHO is at the forefront of the global campaign to curb the tobacco epidemic. The Organization has a responsibility to ensure that this is reflected in all its work, including in its recruitment practices and in the image projected by the Organization and its staff members.
The Cleveland Clinic, Geisinger, and other large health systems also have policies against hiring smokers. It goes beyond the health industry, though. Union Pacific Railroad and Scotts Miracle-Gro are among companies of like mind.