242187 Providence, Rhode Island's Smoke-Free Public Housing Policy Initiative: Lessons Learned, Barriers Overcome

Monday, October 31, 2011

Cynthia Roberts, MA, Doctoral Candidate , Tobacco Control Program, Rhode Island Department of Health, Providence, RI
The City of Providence, Rhode Island together with various partners including The Providence Housing Authority (PHA) and Providence Community Health Centers, and with oversight by the State of Rhode Island Department of Health, has received Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) funding to implement a set of diverse and comprehensive tobacco control MAPPS strategies. The initiative, the Tobacco Free Campaign (TFC), includes a policy goal to launch a smoke-free phase-out policy change for the entire PHA system starting with five high rise apartment buildings. These high-rise buildings serve the elderly and disabled populations and house 20% of the overall PHA resident population.

The smoke-free phase-out will be implemented on a rolling basis upon annual renewal of residents' lease agreements and will include the entire indoor building (common areas and individual apartment units) as well as the outdoor campus. At the time of abstract submission, the PHA has successfully passed the policy.

The TFC team will share lessons learned in the passage and preparation for implementation of the smoke-free housing policy including legal guidance received, how the team worked with public housing governance bodies and residents to build support, and the integration of cessation services. The team will describe challenges and opportunities faced and actions taken to overcome those challenges. Results from resident surveys and focus groups will be shared as well as sample policy language and outreach materials.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
1.) Attendees will be able to describe a possible process for passing smoke-free public housing policy. 2.) Attendees will be able to identify 3-5 potential barriers and 3-5 potential facilitators of such policy passage 3.) Attendees will be able to list 3-5 research and planning tools that can assist communities with passing smoke-free public housing policy.

Keywords: Tobacco Policy, Tobacco Control

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the program evaluator for the RI Tobacco Control Program and am a doctoral candidate in Behavioral Science
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.