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Smoking Ban in Public Housing Could Be Extinguished: Lawsuit Filed by Smokers' Rights Group (C.L.A.S.H.)

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Smoking Ban in Public Housing Could Be Extinguished: Lawsuit Filed by Smokers' Rights Group (C.L.A.S.H.)

While proponents of the smoking ban in public housing, set to take effect today, July 30th, are running around promoting it, there is a failure to also inform affected residents and all others whose interests will be served that a legal challenge has been filed seeking to overturn it.

PR Newswire

BROOKLYN, N.Y., July 30, 2018 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment (C.L.A.S.H.), joined by several residents who live in public housing, filed a lawsuit on July 23rd challenging the Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) regulation that directs all state and local housing authorities to ban smoking inside and out of public housing facilities nationwide, most notably within resident's apartments.

HUD's anti-smoking regulation was finalized at the end of the Obama Administration with an effective date of compliance no later than today, July 30, 2018. The regulation requires public housing authorities to implement and enforce rules accordingly. Public housing tenants, many of whom are minorities and veterans, are subject to eviction for violating the new regulation.

The Observer [1] described the regulation as maybe "the most far-reaching, intrusive and over-reaching executive order of the entire Obama administration."

Audrey Silk, founder of C.L.A.S.H. says, "Anti-smokers claim that HUD's smoking ban is a valid exercise of government power because there is no general 'right to smoke,' but that claim is intentionally misleading because the government doesn't have the right to reach into our homes and dictate our personal behaviors and habits. This lawsuit is about defending the right to be left alone to engage in a legal activity in the privacy of one's own home. HUD claims the ban is necessary to protect non-smoking residents in other apartments but, not only are they exceeding their authority, the lack of sound scientific evidence that someone smoking in their own apartment puts other tenants' health at risk hasn't stopped them either. Frustrated by the holdouts who've refused to submit to their current coercive measures and quit smoking, this is really the story of public health zealots partnering with HUD to begin the despotic breaking down of front doors to reach them. It won't end at public housing if they're not stopped here."

C.L.A.S.H.'s attorney, Edward Paltzik, says, "The smoking ban is constitutionally deficient on many levels. This is also another profound example of an administrative agency run amok. Nowhere did Congress bestow on HUD the power to intrude into peoples' homes to regulate this sort of lawful behavior."

The suit, filed through the Manhattan-based law firm, Joshpe Mooney Paltzik LLP, was filed in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

Related Material:

CLASH v. HUD (18cv1711): http://www.nycclash.com/CLASHvHUD-Complaint-18cv1711.pdf

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NYC Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment (C.L.A.S.H.) is a grassroots organization established in 2000 dedicated to advancing and protecting the interests of adults who choose to smoke cigarettes or enjoy other forms of tobacco or use electronic cigarettes.

Joshpe Mooney Paltzik LLP is a full-service Manhattan-based constitutional, litigation, and corporate law firm.

Contact:

Audrey Silk, Founder, NYC C.L.A.S.H.
Phone: (917) 888-9317
Email: nycclash(at)nycclash.com
Web: http://www.nycclash.com

Edward Paltzik, Joshpe Mooney Paltzik LLP
Phone: (516) 526-0341
Email: epaltzik(at)jmpllp.com
Web: http://www.jmpllp.com

Footnote:

1. "The Nanny State Shames Poor Smokers in Their Homes." Editorial. 12/7/16
http://observer.com/2016/12/the-nanny-state-shames-poor-smokers-in-their-home

SOURCE NYC Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment (C.L.A.S.H.)

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