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Re: non-smokers' rights

Posted by Stacy on October 09, 2001 at 13:08:05:

In Reply to: non-smokers' rights posted by Nancia D'Alimonte on October 09, 2001 at 10:30:28:

I sympathize (we have the exact same problem in our apartment), but if your building's leases permit smoking in the apartments, there's not a lot you can legally do. Negotiation and accomedation are the keys here. If you can figure out where the smoke is coming from, try talking to that tenant. Maybe they'll be willing to smoke out a window, or do something to lessen the smoke coming into your place. Air filters can also work wonders. I highly recommend the ionic ones from Sharper Image.

If someone ever had the time and resources to team up with some lawyers, I imagine there's a chance for setting some kind of legal precedent in this kind of case. Secondhand smoke is a legitimate health risk, and in a city like New York, tenants who aren't rich can't realistically hope to find a dwelling so well-sealed or removed from other apartments that there's no smoke risk. It's rather akin to the situation in California where the legislature banned smoking in bars because employees couldn't realistically avoid the smoke risk.

But right now, unfortunuately, you're stuck with adapting to the smoke as best you can. Sorry.

: We recently moved into a new apartment (which we DO like), however, the first morning, we were rudely woken with horrible second hand smoke (it was not apparent when we first checked out the apartment and the former tenants did not smoke). As I am allergic to smoke, this problem is going to continue to be a huge issue. From my best assesment, the smoke is coming from other apartments. There is even a NO SMOKING sign in the hall, but that is only for the hallway. What rights do we have as tenants to keep our living space smoke-free? (When inquiring initially about the smoke, I was told that they could not dictate to people what they could/could not do in their apartment... true! But what about the non-smokers? We have rights too!) Can we ask to have some sort of a sealant put on our apartment walls? No resolution thus far.

: Please help... this is NOT fair and incredibly frustrating.

: Sincerely,
: Nancia D'Alimonte

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