SOUTH LOS ANGELES ( — The UCLA Center for Health Policy Research Wednesday launched a new campaign to reduce all smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke in apartment buildings.

The Smokefree Apartments Los Angeles initiative to encourage landlords citywide to adopt smoke-free policies is part of a national program funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The initiative’s target area includes apartment buildings in some of the most densely populated and low-income neighborhoods of South L.A.

According to a UCLA study released Wednesday, only 20 percent of the apartment complexes in L.A. bans smoking. State law allows landlords to designate their buildings smoke-free.

Phyllis Brown, who quit smoking five days ago, said she can see it from both sides. “I kind of do agree with them. But also on the other end, they do have to respect that some people just can’t quit like that.”

The study also found more than 80 percent of the tenants polled said they would rather live in a smoke-free apartment, and 85 percent of the smokers said they prefer to live in a smoke-free apartment as well.

Earlier this year, the American Lung Association gave L.A. an “F” grade in the category of smoke-free housing, according to the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.

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