Smoke-Free Indoor Air
We all know the harmful effects that secondhand smoke and vapor can have. Casinos, gaming venues, multi-unit housing, and bars — or any other public space we enjoy with family and friends — should have clean air to protect everyone’s health. Cities can put people’s health first by ensuring that businesses and other indoor spaces remain free from the smoke and vapor from tobacco (including e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products) and cannabis.
The Secondhand Smoke Challenge
- Tobacco use is the largest preventable cause of death, disease, and disability in the U.S., taking the lives of more than 480,000 people annually. There is no risk-free level of secondhand smoke exposure; even brief exposure can be harmful to health.
- While many cities have passed smoke-free indoor air policies, common gaps in these policies include e-cigarettes and other heated tobacco products, smoking in casinos and gaming venues and multi-unit housing, and cannabis.
- These gaps put lower-income workers and families at risk. For example, the gaming industry employed approximately 650,000 people in 2020, and these workers’ median income was substantially lower than that of all workers. Similarly, approximately 80 million people live in multi-unit housing, with a quarter of these living below the poverty level.
A Healthy Solution: Smoke-Free Indoor Air
- Protects Millions of Workers — Smoke-free workplaces protect employees from exposure to carcinogens. While many workplaces are smoke-free, there are many vulnerable workers at risk in hospitality jobs — including bars and casinos/gaming —that often do not require more than a high school education.
- Doesn’t Lead to Negative Economic Consequences — Having smoke-free indoor air policies does not have an effect on profit for restaurants or bars. In some cases, they improve business — and protect everyone’s health.
- Protects Millions of Low-Income Residents — A comprehensive ban on smoking in multi-unit housing could protect an estimated 28 million residents from exposure to secondhand smoke in their home or apartment.
The state of smoke-free indoor air policies in big US cities
32 out of 75 cities received a medal for smoke-free indoor air policies, including 21 golds, six silver, and five bronze.
Measuring cities’ smoke-free indoor air policies
|How will we award smoke-free indoor air medals?||Bronze Medal||Silver Medal||Gold Medal|
|Smoking is prohibited in non-hospitality workplaces, including nursing home facilities common spaces and childcare facilities; in restaurants and bars; and in public places.|
|Smoking or vaping tobacco, including e-cigarettes and other heated tobacco products, is banned in non-hospitality workplaces, including nursing home facilities common spaces and childcare facilities; in restaurants and bars; and in public places.|
|Same as silver, and bans in one of the following: casinos and gaming industry venues; multi-unit housing containing more than three units; marijuana; or private rooms in nursing home facilities.|