254947 Leaving no tenant exposed: Creating smoke-free public housing

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 2:30 PM - 2:50 PM

Sarah Mayberry, BS , Breathe Easy Coalition of Maine, Portland, ME
Tina Pettingill, MPH , Breathe Easy Coalition of Maine, Pettingill Consulting Services, Scarborough, ME
It is well known that there is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke and if smoking is allowed in a multi-unit housing building, the toxic secondhand smoke chemicals can move with the up to 65% of air that is exchanged between units. Studies have shown that the majority of tenants would prefer to live in a smoke-free environment but what if you don't have the means to move to a smoke-free housing complex? For those living in public housing, smoke-free housing policy change is a needed and effective way to protect from the harmful effects of tobacco smoke. Public Housing Authorities strive to provide safe and affordable housing, something that smoke-free housing policies can assist with. Adoption of a 100% smoke-free policy will remove harmful secondhand smoke from the housing complex, reduce the risk of fire and fire death and greatly decrease unit turnover costs. Through collaboration, stakeholder engagement, proper messaging and policy implementation support, the Smoke-Free Housing Coalition of Maine has supported 100% of the Maine's Public Housing Authorities in adopting policies that will protect their residents from secondhand smoke. By following proven strategies, it is possible through voluntary policy change to make smoke-free public housing a reality.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
Explain the case for smoke-free multi-unit housing. List three factors for adopting smoke-free policies that will influence Public Housing Authorities to take action. Identify strategies to advance smoke-free Public Housing Authority policies.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Program Director of the Breathe Easy Coalition of Maine, the umbrella coalition of the Smoke-Free Housing Coalition of Maine, which has supported 100% of Maine's Public Housing Authorities in adopting smoke-free housing policies.
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.