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Public Housing Policies

On November 30, 2016, U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Julián Castro announced that public housing developments in the U.S. will be required to provide a smoke-free environment for their residents. The rule goes into effect on February 3, 2017. Public housing developments will have 18 months to implement their smoke-free policies.

The U.S. Surgeon General has warned that breathing secondhand smoke for even a short time is dangerous. Children, the elderly and disabled, low-income, and other disadvantaged individuals, and families are the most likely to suffer from breathing secondhand smoke. Research has demonstrated that smoke does not stay contained within individual apartments and as a result, can harm residents in non-smoking apartments. Smoke-free housing benefits landlords and managers as well because it reduces fires caused by smoking and saves on property maintenance and unit rehab costs.

If your Public Housing Authority would like assistance implementing a smoke-free multifamily unit campus policy, refer to U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Change is in the Air, An Action Guide for Establishing Smoke-Free Public Housing and Multifamily Properties. HUD has also developed an easy-to-follow toolkit for resident organizations.

Contact us for free local technical assistance.

View the Alabama Association of Housing and Redevelopment Authorities (AAHRA) Housing Authority Directory to locate a housing authority in your area.

Page last updated: June 7, 2023