In a move that may enrage those who enjoy a cigarette on their couch after work, but delight air-freshener-wielding neighbors, a major landlord has banned smoking in all of its apartments across the country.
As noted in this article, although the program will roll out gradually, it appears to be the first of this scale by a national property owner. It also seems likely to create controversy. Where past efforts against smoking have focused on public gathering places — like bars, stadiums and courthouses — the landlord is now trying to prohibit legal private behavior.
Many studies have proved that secondhand smoke, which is cited as the reason for most smoking bans, is a health hazard. What’s less obvious is how much smoke actually seeps from one apartment to the next.
Whether the cause of that decline or just a coincidence, a raft of policies in the last decade have greatly limited where people can smoke. In New York, smoking was snuffed out in restaurants in 2002 and on beaches and in city parks in 2011; last year, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said he wanted every building, including co-ops and condos, to draft a smoking policy, whether pro or con, which some saw as encouraging bans on apartment smoking. The mayor also hopes to set limits on who can smoke: in April, officials unveiled a plan to raise the age limit for cigarette purchases to 21 from 18. Read more…