Public housing residents can no longer smoke in their homes

NYCHA tenants already dealing with lead paint and toxic mold now hit with smoking ban

Smokers won't be able to light up in or near public housing starting July 31.

Today is the first day that the nationwide smoking ban went into full affect.

Under the terms of the ban, which was passed by the Obama administration in 2016, the use of cigarettes, cigars and pipes is prohibited in all government subsidized housing units.

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People who smoke are still allowed to rent units, but as part of the policy, no smoking will be allowed inside any public housing buildings or within 25 feet of those buildings. Electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, have not been banned but may be in the future.

"Eliminating smoking indoors and close to buildings is the only way to fully protect people from secondhand smoke", the department states in the release.

The new rule allows NYCHA staff and residents to report violations; enforcement will include an informal conversation to discuss the smoking ban along with the provision of educational materials.

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Tenants who break the rules under the new smoking ban, risk being evicted after three violations.

Both HUD and the American Lung Association says it's created to protect the health of people living in federally-funded housing from second-hand smoke.

"Residents have been required to sign new leases acknowledging the new policy and staff will continue to provide smoking cessation program information to residents as requested", Lemons said. Not to mention, they estimate it will save public housing agencies $153 million in costs related to healthcare and repairs.

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