Highly smoke-sensitive Helen Jaegers’ ordeal working in the Mo State Capitol in 1996

The letter pasted below, dated April 13th, 1996, provides some insight into how Mrs. Helen Jaegers suffered from secondhand smoke exposure while working for a state representative in the Missouri State Capitol. Her letter was addressed to Mr. Doug Burnett, Chief Clerk to the Missouri House of Representatives at the time.


Rep. Bill Boucher

It was faxed to MoGASP on April 23rd, 1996, by a sympathetic legislator, Rep. Bill Boucher, a Democrat representing District 48, part of the Kansas City area in Jackson County.

In her letter, Mrs. Jaegers described the steroid medications she was taking to control her asthma (from which she had suffered since age 2), and how she was sickened by workplace smoking, in some cases resulting in emergency room visits. The P.S., added by hand to her typewritten letter to Chief Clerk Burnett, underscored her plea for help:

“P.S. On Monday, 4-15-96, my husband and daughter rushed me to the EMERGENCY Room.
I was having a reaction to the medicine
I am so ready to wake up from this nightmare.”


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