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Ban on smoking in Detroit public housing - does it restrict persoal freedom?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2010/12/08/Detroit-public-housing-to-ban-smoking/UPI-66431291831079/

 

http://www.myfoxdetroit.com/dpp/news/local/detroit-public-housing-smoking-ban-question-20101208-wpms

 

up front, i'm biased because i'm a non-smoker and i live in public housing in another state where a smoking ban has already been in effect.

 

so far, the result of the local smoking ban seems to be greatly increased smoking outside near buildings, even though there's a 20-foot rule. which of course exposes many more people to second-hand smoke, especially all the children. i've told my daughter to just steer clear of it, although she can't always avoid it realistically.

 

the one thing the ban seems most effective at is highlighting which houses have smokers who are pregnant and/or smoke around their children - then again, that relies on the public reporting, which never truly works in public housing; there's too great a chance of retaliation (i.e. reports of smoking around children/during pregnancy are always assumed to be from non-smokers who then get harassed). my style is rather to ask a person if they want to stop smoking, i'll find all the resources for them that i can, and they have my support.

 

i noticed today on Headline News, as well as on comments to news sites, a lot of hyperbole that a smoking ban will lead to banning of all freedoms in public housing. i remember a similar debate when smoking bans were first put in place in restaurants, hospitals, public buildings and eventually on outdoor smoking in certain places.

 

with the above bans, i remember the same hyperbole, but i don't remember any other losses of personal freedoms coming about. please correct me if i'm wrong! i know cellphone restrictions/bans are on the rise, but are they connected to the smoking bans as a loss of one freedom turning into a loss of many?

 

can a ban on smoking work if it merely drives people outside and increases the overall amount of second-hand smoke for everyone?

 

does a ban on smoking in a publicly-funded home necessarily mean that all other freedoms will be impinged upon over time?

 

post #2 of 4

I don't know...but I like the idea of this. I personally have asthma and if I was in need of housing I could not live somewhere smokers have lived. I can not ride in a car for days after someone who smokes (not in the car but on their clothes) was in the car.

 

For me I think its a health and care issue. By smoking you are potentially destroying a home that isn't yours (its public housing not personal housing) and lessening the value of the home as well as potentially putting others (like me) at risk. (In terms of damage to carpeting air vents and other places smoke lingers, not to mention ascetics like paint yellowing.

 

It was wonderful when my campus at college banned smoking outside of a few areas, previous to the ban I was unable to attend quite a few classes as I had attacks on the way to class due to smokers.

post #3 of 4
I think landlords should have an obligation to keep the apartments of nonsmokers free of smoke. In most buildings the only way to do that is to ban smoking.

What should happen with the ban is stepped up enforcement of doorway and window restrictions for outdoor smoking as well.
post #4 of 4

I do agree that landlords should be able to specify non-smoking, but (and this is a big but) I don't think that should be a privilege afforded to the government with their public housing mainly because the US government bodies seem to enjoy finding more and more restrictions to ensure only the "right" people are allowed to afford shelter.

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