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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, May 26, 2007

Report: Hawai'i 5th in nation for homes that ban smoking

Advertiser Staff

Hawai'i households have hung out the no-smoking sign, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The report ranks Hawai'i fifth among states when it comes to households that ban smoking within their confines.

The CDC said almost eight out of every 10 homes here didn't allow smoking in 2003, according to a review of household surveys conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Only Utah, California, Arizona and Oregon have more smokeless households. Kentucky households had the most relaxed stance toward smoking; only 53 percent prohibited puffing at home.

Hawai'i's rate increased from 1993, when 51.5 percent of Isle homes banned people from lighting up.

The CDC reported that more households across the country had gone smokeless between 1993 and 2003. It said this might have been driven by a decline in smokers and more information about the dangers of secondhand smoke.

The ranking isn't much of a surprise given the state's smoke-free stance.

Late last year the CDC issued a study showing there were fewer smokers here than in most of the rest of the country. It said only about 1 in 6 people age 18 or older smoke here, making Hawai'i the fourth-lowest state when it comes to people lighting up. Nationally, about 20 percent of adults identified themselves as smokers.

The state also sports some of the strictest smoking restrictions in the nation as it tries to protect people from breathing second-hand smoke. Last year a statewide law went into effect that banned smoking in bars, restaurants and many workplaces.

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