All public housing in Tucson is smoke-free in a new nationwide ban

TUCSON, Ariz. - A smoke-free ban for all public housing is in effect in Tucson, impacting thousands of families. And by July 31st, the ban will be in place nationwide.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development says going smoke-free will lower property maintenance costs and reduce the risk of fires. But some people aren't happy with the new rule.

Angie Rosetialgman has lived at "Tucson House" for more than 7 years. The Tucson House has new signs that are all a part of the new rule that bans cigarettes, cigars, and pipes from all of it's properties in the nation.

Rosetialgman says a lot of people who live there, like to smoke. She says when housing managers tell them not to smoke, she feels that it's un-american. She says, "if they want to smoke, they pay their rent. They're not causing any trouble. They should have a right to smoke." She went on to say the new ban is "not going to change anything" and that "people are still going to do it."

Another woman who lives at the Tucson House says she thinks the ban crosses the line. Michelle Cross says, "they will continue to do what they want to do in their apartments, and I have no problem with that, as long as they don't do it around me."

Keith Gregory is the Deputy Director of Housing and Community Development in Tucson. He says he understands the frustration, but for now, there's nothing they can do. 

Gregory says, "it's the right thing to do. It's for their health and for the health of other people who come to the property. Also, the fire hazard caused by people who fall asleep with cigarettes in their hand."

Housing directors in Tucson say they want to work with tenants who want to kick their smoking habit and that they're working with the American Lung Association and other organizations to help clients have resources available to help curb their smoking habits.

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