Support for smoke-free policies in a pro-smoking culture: findings from the European survey on tobacco control attitudes and knowledge

Int J Public Health. 2009;54(6):403-8. doi: 10.1007/s00038-009-0074-2. Epub 2009 Sep 23.


Objectives: To assess support for tobacco control policies between smokers and non-smokers, and the effects of nicotine dependence on smokers' policy support in a country with high smoking rates and pro-smoking norms.

Methods: Population-based, cross-sectional telephone survey of a random sample of 700 Greek adults (mean age = 40.2, SD = 10.9) assessing smoking status and attitudes towards tobacco control policies.

Results: Almost half of the respondents were current smokers, and smoking prevalence was significantly higher in males than females. Compared to non-smokers and former smokers, current smokers were less supportive of smoke-free public places and taxation policies. All groups appeared equally supportive for policies against sales of tobacco products to minors. Daily smokers with higher nicotine dependence were less supportive for smoke-free public places and taxation policies compared to smokers with lower dependence scores.

Conclusions: Smoking status and nicotine dependence differentiate the level of support for smoke-free policies. However, both smokers and non-smokers seem to be supportive for policies aiming to prevent youth from smoking, even in a country with pro-smoking social norms and high smoking rates.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Culture*
  • Europe / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Health Surveys*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Public Policy*
  • Smoking / epidemiology
  • Smoking / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Young Adult