Pre-Ordinance: Using Local Data to Support the Smoke-Free NOLA Ordinance
In November 2014, a New Orleans City Councilperson introduced the controversial Smoke-free NOLA Ordinance. This ordinance expanded the current smoke-free air law to prohibit smoking in all bars and casinos in New Orleans, Louisiana (NOLA). The Ordinance unanimously passed and was signed into law by Mayor Mitch Landrieu on January 30, 2015 and will become effective April 22, 2015.
Leading up to the introduction of the ordinance, The Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living (TFL), strategically developed a special studies portfolio and media campaigns in order to support smoke-free and tobacco-free policies at the state and local levels. This presentation will discuss how TFL: (1) contributed to social norm change via media campaigns, (2) provided information about tourist attitudes regarding smoke-free policies, and (3) collected air quality data in NOLA bars and casinos. We will describe the role of the 2012 “<blank> Stinks” Campaign which featured Louisiana residents “filling in the blank” with reasons why smoking is harmful or undesirable and the follow up 2014 Healthier Air For All Campaign and social norm data collected during these campaigns. Because the NOLA economy relies on tourism revenue, TFL collected data about tourist attitudes and the potential loss of conferences and conventions. And finally, TFL conducted a series of studies in 2014 which measured air quality in NOLA bars, casinos, and outdoors and the lung function of bar patrons who were exposed to secondhand smoke in NOLA bars.
Supporting controversial health policies require strategic planning, specific knowledge of the city and/or state, local data, and a willingness to address the concerns of those likely to oppose these policies.
We recommend planning data collection and dissemination needs 3-4 years in advance for major health policy change efforts to ensure the data will be sufficient in rigor and breadth, but recent, and therefore relevant.
Learning Areas:Public health or related public policy
Discuss the challenges of creating an evidence base to support controversial health policies at the municipal level. Formulate strategies to support policy change.
Keyword(s): Tobacco Control, Public Health Policy
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been working in tobacco control in Louisiana since 2012. My work consists of designing and implementing the special students described, evaluating the media campaigns, and disseminating these data to various audiences.
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.