Smoking ban starts in Manchester public housing
Larry Buck, left, and Lucien Breton enjoy a cigarette Wednesday outside the Pariseau high-rise in Manchester. (MARK HAYWARD/UNION LEADER)
The ban follows a year of preparation, housing authority Director Dick Dunfey said. Nowadays, smokers are more understanding of limitations placed on their habit, he said.
The ban applies to all apartments, hallways and common areas in the authority-owned apartments as well as the three tax-credit-financed developments the authority manages: the Mary Gale Home, the Brown School and the Laurette Sweeney Apartments off South Porter Street.
People cannot smoke within 25 feet of entrances, a restriction that is a sore spot for a couple of smokers outside the Pariseau high-rise Wednesday evening.
“The winters are really cold out here,” Buck said. “There’s a lot of old and disabled people in this building. ... We don’t have anywhere to go.”
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recommended in 2012 that local authorities ban smoking in public housing. The Manchester authority board voted in April 2013 to ban smoking, effective today.
Dunfey said smokers who violate the ban will be given a warning. In general, tenants are evicted after the third lease violation.
“It’s bad. Too many people smoke in the hallway, inside their apartments, in the stairs,” Ricardo Ventura said.
It’s not only tobacco that gets burned, she said. She once got dizzy and fell down after breathing in smoke from a nearby apartment.
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