From Your Local Lung Association
Smokefree Living programs work with property owners, managers of multi-unit housing to create smokefree environments
The American Lung Associations in Arizona and New Mexico are working with local partners to help multi-unit housing buildings create smokefree environments. The programs work with property owners, managers and residents to provide education and resources that support policy adoption, implementation and enforcement.
The Arizona Smokefree Living Collaborative Program was established locally in 2012 to empower Arizona communities statewide to live smokefree. The program coaches property managers, owners and other decision makers in shared housing on document development and presenting the policy to staff. The trainings also help the properties enforce the policy and develop solutions for any challenges throughout the transition to smokefree living.
To encourage property managers and owners to adopt a smokefree policy, program staff plan and implement workshops highlighting the benefits of smokefree buildings, including cost savings, increased marketability, healthier communities, fewer home fires and increased sustainability. These workshops also cover the legal and fair housing aspects and advantages.
The Smokefree Living program has exceeded its goals in achieving success in environments ranging from affordable public housing to high-end luxury communities. The program is supported by the American Lung Association in Arizona, Breath Easy Arizona, Tobacco Free Arizona and the Arizona Multihousing Association. Learn more at www.smokefreeathomenm.org
The American Lung Association in New Mexico partners with the New Mexico Department of Health, four Public Housing Authorities, three large property owners and non-profit affordable housing entities to implement strong voluntary smokefree policies as part of the Smoke-Free at Home NM initiative.
In 2016, the Lung Association tracked the progress of more than 8,000 multi-housing units as they adopted and implemented smokefree policies. The program hosted five informational sessions for more than 100 property managers and owners as well as eight Thinking About Quitting workshops for 96 residents.
The Smoke-Free at Home New Mexico program works with Tobacco Use Prevention and Control contractors – KERES Consulting, American Indian Center and Oso Vista Ranch Project – to spread the smokefree living mission to Native American populations.
The program's main vision is that all New Mexicans live in a healthy, smokefree environment.
Smoking in multi-unit housing can have an effect on all residents. There are more than 7,000 chemicals in secondhand smoke – 70 of which are linked to cancer. This can cause harm not to only to those that smoke and live with smokers, but also neighbors in apartment buildings due to shared airflow. Secondhand smoke in shared housing poses a risk to children and older family members, who spend more time at home. Sometimes they don't even have a choice about breathing in secondhand smoke.
Smokefree Living programs not only reduce exposure to secondhand smoke, but keep carcinogens away from those at a higher risk of lung disease.