July 13, 2024
New law expands availability of smoke-free housing
SACRAMENTO--Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) announced Wednesday that Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law SB 332. This new law expands the availability of smoke-free housing in California by allowing landlords to prohibit smoking in rental units. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2012.

“With the Governor’s action today, we will see the availability of smoke-free, multi-family housing grow throughout California,” said Senator Padilla. “While more than 86% of Californians do not smoke, there is currently very little smoke-free housing in California. Living in multi-family housing should not compromise the health of renters or their children. This new law will provide tenants with healthier choices,” said Padilla.

Currently, a landlord may include terms in a rental agreement such as restricting pets, noise, and specific furniture such as waterbeds. Despite the negative health effects of secondhand smoke there is nothing in current law that explicitly permits a landlord to restrict smoking.

Over 30 percent of California housing is multi-family residences. Secondhand smoke can travel in and out of open windows and doors, through shared ventilation systems, walls, ceiling crawl spaces, and gaps around electrical wiring, light fixtures, plumbing, ductwork, and even baseboards.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, secondhand smoke is responsible for an estimated 49,400 deaths among nonsmokers each year in the United States, including 3,400 lung cancer deaths and 46,000 deaths due to heart disease. Secondhand smoke exposure causes as many as 300,000 children in the United States under the age of 18 to suffer lower respiratory tract infections, such as pneumonia and bronchitis. (INT)
Story Date: September 9, 2011
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