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Contemp Drug Probl. 2008 Spring;35:59-98.

Social Organization in Bars: Implications for Tobacco Control Policy.

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  • 1Prevention Research Center, Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, 1995 University Ave., Ste. 450, Berkeley, CA 94704 USA.


This paper considers social roles and relationships of the patrons, staff and owners of bars as critical factors determining adherence to public health policies, and specifically California's smokefree workplace law. Specific elements of social organization in bars affecting health policy include the community within which the bar is set, the unique identity the bar creates, the bar staff and patrons who enact this identity, and their bar society. These elements were found to contribute to the development of power relations within the bar and solidarity against the outside world, resulting in either resistance to or compliance with smokefree workplace policy.

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