Smokefree DC is a citizen-based group whose goal is to promote smokefree environments in Washington, DC.

New trend: Smokefree public housing

View of the Clifton Terrace apartment building
The New York Times had an excellent story today about how housing authorities are increasingly going smokefree.

In 2005, 32 housing authorities had smokefree policies in effect. By the end of 2011, 285 will.

Cities that have or plan to make public housing smokefree: Boston (in September), Detroit, San Antonio and Portland, Ore.

The reason?

The bans are largely a response to the risks posed to nonsmokers by secondhand smoke. In addition, property managers say smokeless apartments are cheaper to clean, especially if there is carpeting, and reduce the risk of fire.

The story notes the increasing awareness of the health harms of secondhand smoke migrating from one apartment to another. Although the story has a quote from a smoker concerned about her supposed rights (there is no right to smoke, btw), it recognizes that there are other people in the picture (tenants) who have rights too (the right to breathe clean air, for instance).

New York City has not yet enacted a smokefree policy in its public housing.

Washington, D.C.? Of course not. This is the city that just permanently weakened its smokefree law via a budget amendment.



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