Evaluation of the 1990 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention smoke-free policy

Am J Health Promot. 1995 Jul-Aug;9(6):456-61. doi: 10.4278/0890-1171-9.6.456.


Purpose: To determine the prevalence of tobacco use among Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)/Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) employees and the effect of the smoke-free policy on smoking behavior and air quality at work.

Design: A stratified telephone survey of 1181 CDC/ATSDR employees randomly selected from employee rosters.

Setting: CDC/ATSDR work sites in Atlanta, Georgia, and other major CDC locations throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.

Subjects: Randomly selected employees of CDC/ATSDR1, or about 22% of the total CDC/ATSDR population; 98% of eligible persons selected agreed to participate.

Measures: Demographic and smoking history variables, attitudes toward and impact of the smoke-free policy on smoking behavior, and self-report changes in air quality were the measures used.

Results: Overall cigarette smoking prevalence was only 11.1%. One percent reported using chewing tobacco, 1.1% reported smoking a pipe, and 1.4% reported smoking cigars. Average self-reported, daily cigarette consumption significantly decreased after the smoking ban took effect. Overall, 90% of the employees supported the smoke-free policy, and 80% of the employees believed that smokers were complying with the smoke-free policy. Most employees believed that the air quality of work areas and nonwork areas (65% and 69%, respectively) had improved since the smoke-free policy was implemented.

Conclusions: These findings are consistent with previous evaluations of smoke-free policies and suggest that most employees are generally supportive of workplace smoking restrictions. Such policies can also have a positive impact on smoking behavior and perceived air quality.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S.
  • Demography
  • Female
  • Health Policy
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Exposure
  • Occupational Health*
  • Sampling Studies
  • Smoking / epidemiology*
  • Smoking Prevention*
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / prevention & control*
  • United States


  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution