Zulu v. State of New York

An inmate sued, alleging that the state’s correctional facility was not in compliance with the New York State Clean Indoor Air Act when his instructor and several students in a drafting class at the correctional facility were smoking.  The court ruled that the act “does not give rise to a cause of action in tort, and there is no general duty on the part of the State to provide inmates with a smoke-free environment.”  An Eighth Amendment violation is not properly before the court because Zulu did not allege that the secondhand smoke he experienced had or could have a serious effect on his present or future health.

2001 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 822.