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As the evidence of the serious health consequences of SHS exposure continues to grow, more state and local entities are enacting legislation and ordinances to limit exposure. However, most state-level legislation involves smoking restrictions in workplaces, restaurants, and bars (4), venues where smoking restrictions may not necessarily have a strong effect on youth aged 12 to 19. In 2004 in the United States, 41.1% of youth aged 13 to 15 reported SHS exposure in the home, and 54.9% reported SHS exposure in public places (5). From 2000 to 2009, middle school and high school students in the United States have reported significantly less exposure to SHS in vehicles; however, more than 20% of nonsmoking students are still exposed to SHS in a vehicle on a regular basis (6).
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Smoke-free policies have also been linked to reduced cigarette use in youth (11). Our finding that high school students who want to stop smoking cigarettes are more likely to support smoke-free policies in indoor public and private places and partial smoking bans in outdoor public places suggests that these students recognize the possible health benefits of smoke-free policies. Other research has shown that implementing a smoke-free home policy is significantly associated with successful quit attempts in adults in the home (12,13). This is especially important given the influence that family members who smoke have on youth (14). Establishing positive, smoke-free adult role models for youth may be both a benefit and a motivating factor for implementing smoke-free policies, as demonstrated by a study showing that this was a primary reason given for support of a tobacco-free parks policy (15).
Our results show that North Carolina middle school and high school students support smoke-free policies regardless of venue. These findings are similar to those reported from international surveys (7) and provide greater detail about youth support, showing that support for smoke-free policies is high for a variety of specific venues: both indoor and outdoor public places as well as personal places such as homes, vehicles, and work environments.
Although high school nonsmokers showed the highest levels of support for restricting exposure to SHS at all venues, high school current smokers reported higher levels of support for total smoke-free policies in homes, indoor work environments, and indoor public places than for partial or no smoke-free policies. Again, these findings are similar to those from international surveys of youth attitudes (7). Additionally, North Carolina youth attitudes are in line with US adult attitudes toward smoke-free policies, particularly with regard to differences between current smokers and nonsmokers (8,15,16).
European Union (EU). The United States and the European Union (EU) cooperated closely on combating terrorism. In October 2009, the U.S. Attorney General, Secretary of Homeland Security, and EU Justice and Homes Affairs Ministers adopted a joint statement committing both sides to enhancing policy and operational cooperation in the areas of justice freedom and security. U.S. and EU leaders at the November 2009 Summit highlighted the Ministerial statement and other efforts to deepen counterterrorism cooperation. The EU Counterterrorism Coordinator, Gilles de Kerchove, coordinated the counterterrorism work of the Council of the European Union, composed of representatives from all 27 EU Member States. De Kerchove participated in regular dialogues with U.S. counterterrorism officials.