Learning Objectives: Identify effective strategies to pass clean indoor air policies, and effectively plan smokefree campaigns based upon lessons learned from the field.
Abstract: The science is in - secondhand smoke is a known carcinogen and kills at least 53,000 nonsmokers annually. Research also demonstrates that clean indoor air policies reduce exposure to secondhand smoke, reduce tobacco consumption, and increase tobacco cessation. So why is it so challenging to pass a smokefree ordinance? Because the tobacco industry doesn’t want to change the social norm around smoking and lose billions of dollars in profits when their consumers reduce consumption or quit smoking entirely. Tobacco control advocates can succeed despite this seemingly huge barrier if they learn from previous clean indoor air campaigns. A review of fundamental steps that must be taken and milestones that must be achieved to change the social norm about smoking indoors and the subsequent passage and implementation of a strong clean indoor air ordinance will be discussed. In addition, experiences from rural and urban communities that have successfully passed clean indoor air ordinances and withstood tobacco industry opposition will be shared. These proven organizing and implementation strategies will enable coalitions across the nation to be successful in working on this important public health policy.
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