After reviewing benefits and legal implications of smoke-free buildings, you will want to find out what other tenants think about a no-smoking policy. This will help develop a plan for your building. If your buildings are large, you may want to start a committee or group to help work on this issue. The committee may want to consider:

  • What is the long-term vision for your policy?
  • Look at past second-hand smoke related complaints since these can offer information about the type of no-smoking policy you develop.
  • Ask staff and other stakeholders for input and include them in the development of the policy.This will encourage buy-in and support.
  • Conduct a tenant survey to find out:
    • the extent of the problem of second-hand smoke in the building (i.e. number of tenants affected);
    • the number of tenants that currently don’t allow smoking inside;
    • the number of tenants who smoke;
    • the level of support for various no-smoking policy scenarios.

View an example of a sample cover letter and survey you could use for your building.

You could also use survey results from other sources to inform your decision.

In 2009 the Region of Waterloo released the results of a survey mailed to all 2,723 Waterloo Region Housing tenant households. The Waterloo Region survey found that:

  • Seventy-five per cent of all responding households do not permit smoking indoors.
  • Twenty-one per cent of respondents smoked;
  • Fifty-seven per cent of respondents had been exposed to second-hand smoke inside their home; and
  • Fifty-seven per cent want part of their housing. For example, a floor or building in a complex.

See survey results.