A pack of cigarettes a day used to be his habit. Over the years, he tried to cut down on his cigarettes. Six years ago, he experimented and brought home a box of nicotine patches. After three days, the patches were nowhere to be seen on his arm. He argued they made his skin itch.
Cigarette smoke smells. And not everyone in my family tolerates the smell. My father understands the harmful effects of smoking to his health, but what he can’t grasp is the impact of secondhand smoke.
Nowadays, when he longs for a smoke, he hides in the bathroom. But air travels. The fact that my father chooses to smoke in the bathroom shows that he cares about his children’s health. And we, as his children, also care for his health. He needs to try quitting again.
A smoke-free building would give him a bigger push to quit smoking. A smoke-free policy is largely self-enforced and a mutual agreement between the landlord and the tenant. Secondhand smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals compounds and among them, more than 50 are known to cause cancer.
The NYC Coalition for a Smoke-Free City, a health advocacy group, promotes smoke-free housing because “Smoke-free housing protects the health of all New Yorkers, saves money for landlords and property owners, is strongly supported by the public, and completely legal.” A smoke-free environment is the perfect gift for everyone.