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A systematic examination of smoke-free policies in multiunit dwellings in Virginia as reported by property managers: implications for prevention

A systematic examination of smoke-free policies in multiunit dwellings in Virginia as reported by property managers: implications for prevention

American Journal of Health Promotion: Ajhp 26(1): 37-44

ISSN/ISBN: 0890-1171

PMID: 21879941

DOI: 10.4278/ajhp.091005-quan-329

In most states, smoking has been curtailed to some extent in public buildings, workplaces, and restaurants. The next frontier for smoke-free policies is the multiunit dwelling industry. However, the extent to which smoke-free housing currently is available is unknown. The purpose of this study was to measure the market for smoke-free housing in Virginia and to identify barriers to adopting smoke-free policies. Telephone interviews were conducted with property managers of rental apartments, townhouses, senior housing, and public housing in four Virginia cities. Four cities in Virginia. Two hundred sixty-three property managers in four cities in Virginia (approximately 75 property managers per city). Property managers were administered a brief telephone survey. Only 33.8% of property managers reported some type of smoke-free policy, with only 15% of those policies prohibiting smoking in residential units. Most property managers without a smoke-free policy were not considering adopting such a policy for a variety of reasons. The availability of smoke-free multiunit dwellings is severely lacking. This study identified a number of science-based and legal misperceptions that may prevent the adoption of smoke-free policies. Correction of these misperceptions is warranted to increase the availability of smoke-free housing. Such policies will be useful in creating environments that support good health practices while simultaneously protecting tenants from exposure to secondhand smoke.

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Accession: 051271105

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