Support for no-smoking policies among residents of public multiunit housing differs by smoking status

J Community Health. 2013 Dec;38(6):1074-80. doi: 10.1007/s10900-013-9716-7.


We compared perceptions of smoking and non-smoking Tacoma, WA multiunit public housing residents regarding smoke-free policies and in-home smoking rules. Two-hundred-twenty-nine completed surveys (~16% of units) of a modified version of the CDC's multiunit housing resident survey were analyzed. Smokers differed significantly (p < 0.05) from non-smokers with respect to agreement with policies that would ban smoking in homes (41% of smokers and 82% of non-smokers strongly agreed or agreed), in common indoor areas (74% of smokers and 82% of non-smokers strongly agreed or agreed), and for outdoor areas (38% of smokers and 68% of non-smokers strongly agreed or agreed). For in-home smoking rules, smokers and non-smokers again differed significantly (p < 0.05) with 53% of smokers and 90% of non-smokers not allowing smoking in their homes. Twenty-five percent of residents reported smelling secondhand smoke that infiltrated their residence from the outside on a daily basis. The most notable findings are that more than 50% of smokers do not allow smoking in their homes and that more than 50% of smokers are supportive of or neutral with respect to smoke-free policies for one's home. This suggests that implementation of smoke-free policies may not greatly impact vacancy rates even in populations with high rates of smoking (37% in this study).

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Public Housing* / statistics & numerical data
  • Public Opinion*
  • Smoke-Free Policy*
  • Smoking* / epidemiology
  • Smoking* / psychology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Washington / epidemiology