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Making a New Smokefree Housing Law Work

Exploring different enforcement options

Tobacco Prevention

There is a growing awareness that tenants of apartment buildings are often exposed to drifting secondhand smoke. To address this problem, communities are beginning to consider laws to restrict smoking in common areas and individual units of multi-unit housing.

As these communities craft such laws, they face an important question: How will the new law be enforced?

ChangeLab Solutions has created a Model Smokefree Housing Ordinance, which gives a number of different groups – local government, landlords, tenants, and members of the public – the power to enforce the smoking restrictions.

To show how the different enforcement options would play out in a community, ChangeLab Solutions developed this guide to look at a common problem: a nonsmoking tenant living in an apartment where tobacco smoke is drifting in from a neighboring unit. This guide also illustrates how different enforcement options could be used, highlighting the advantages and disadvantages of each.