Learning Objectives: A. describe both owners' and renters' attitudes toward and experience with tobacco smoke that migrates from one apartment unit to another and with smoke-free rental housing.
Abstract: Many people living in rental housing are plagued by secondhand smoke that enters their unit from other parts of the apartment building. While advocates are well aware of the problem, they often lack the knowledge to address it. To address this need, two Minnesota organizations-the Center for Energy and Environment (CEE) and the Association for Nonsmokers-Minnesota-collaborating with advocates for both tenants and landlords, and other consultants, are carrying out a research project with five tasks: (1)in-depth telephone interviews with a small sample of multifamily owners/managers; (2)a telephone survey of a large sample of Minnesota renters; (3)technical legal research related to smoke-free and smoking-permitted buildings; (4) measurement of air movement between units in apartment buildings before and after air sealing and ventilation improvements; and 5)analysis of the comparative financial performance of smoke-free buildings.
This presentation includes some of the results of the first three tasks of the project. Secondhand smoke transfer appears to be very common in multifamily buildings in Minnesota. Air movement through hallways and ventilation systems seems to be more important than movement through cracks and gaps. Owners are looking for relatively inexpensive solutions.
Owners have successfully designated a range of buildings smoke-free (subsidized and not, different building classes, different types of renters). There appears to be excellent market potential for smoke-free buildings, and this potential is high across all demographic segments investigated. Such research can be used to persuade owners to offer more smoke-free rental units.
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