Purpose: Little is known about compliance with worksite nonsmoking policies. This study provides an examination of the relationship of policy compliance to characteristics of the organization and the manner in which the policy was implemented.
Design: Data came from two separate surveys of 1) representatives of worksites that reported having a nonsmoking policy and 2) employed residents from the same communities whose worksites had nonsmoking policies.
Setting: This study was conducted as part of the Community Intervention Trial for Smoking Cessation (COMMIT), being conducted in 11 diverse intervention communities.
Subjects: Data are presented from surveys of 710 worksites (response rate = 90%) and 3,143 employed residents (response rate = 80%) of the same communities.
Measures: Compliance with nonsmoking policies was measured by self-report in both surveys and is compared with worksite and respondent characteristics, type of policy, and methods of policy implementation.
Results: Compliance with nonsmoking policies was high; 55% of worksites with a policy restricting smoking reported that employees always adhered to the policy. Compliance was highest in worksites with more restrictive policies and where labor-management relations were reported to be good. Compliance also was high where the policy was effectively communicated to workers, as through worksite distribution channels, the absence of cigarette vending machines, and the availability of cessation assistance.
Conclusions: These findings indicate that compliance with worksite nonsmoking policies is generally high, especially in the presence of more stringent policies.