Several interactive mechanisms might explain the effectiveness of smoking restrictions to achieve tobacco control (Hovell et al., 2002). Restrictions legitimize the right of nonsmokers not to be exposed to secondhand smoke and establish explicit economic, legal, and social penalties for people who violate them. Smoking bans also reduce the number of areas where smoking is possible, making smoking more inconvenient. By requiring smokers to leave other activities and go to designated smoking areas, smoking bans increase the cost of smoking and result in lower levels of smoking and more cessation attempts by those who continue to smoke. Furthermore, restrictions limiting smoking to fewer and more specific outside areas reduce exposure to smoking social models and can contribute to the prevention of smoking initiation by young people and the prevention of relapse by former smokers. Limits on where and when smoking takes place, decreased exposure to smoking models, and changes in the social function of smoking all work to denormalize tobacco use and reduce the glamour traditionally associated with it. In combination, the legal, economic, and social contingencies established by smoking restrictions change social sentiments regarding smoking and secondhand smoke, transform public perceptions of tobacco, and ultimately reduce smoking at the population level (Hovell et al., 2002).
Finding: Tobacco-free policies have been effective in increasing tobacco cessation among youth and adults. Workplaces, including medical facilities, restaurants, and hotels; colleges and universities; parks and recreational areas; and even private residences and vehicles have implemented tobacco-free policies.
The tobacco retail environment can affect the sale and use of tobacco products favorably or unfavorably. The retail environment encompasses the financial and nonfinancial costs of tobacco products, the accessibility of tobacco products (access restrictions based on age or