Model Policy for a Tobacco-Free College/University
[Name of College/University] Tobacco-Free Policy
Because _____________ [Name of College/University] is committed to providing a safe and healthy working and learning environment for the students, faculty, and staff on its campus, it hereby adopts the following tobacco-free policy.
Section 1. Findings and Intent.
The 2006 U.S. Surgeon General’s Report, The Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke, has concluded that (1) secondhand smoke exposure causes disease and premature death in children and adults who do not smoke; (2) children exposed to secondhand smoke are at an increased risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), acute respiratory problems, ear infections, and asthma attacks, and that smoking by parents causes respiratory symptoms and slows lung growth in their children; (3) exposure of adults to secondhand smoke has immediate adverse effects on the cardiovascular system and causes coronary heart disease and lung cancer; (4) there is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke; (5) establishing smokefree workplaces is the only effective way to ensure that secondhand smoke exposure does not occur in the workplace, because ventilation and other air cleaning technologies cannot completely control for exposure of nonsmokers to secondhand smoke; and (6) evidence from peer-reviewed studies shows that smokefree policies and laws do not have an adverse economic impact on the hospitality industry. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke: A Report of the Surgeon General. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2006.) According to the 2010 U.S. Surgeon General’s Report, How Tobacco Smoke Causes Disease, even occasional exposure to secondhand smoke is harmful and low levels of exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke lead to a rapid and sharp increase in dysfunction and inflammation of the lining of the blood vessels, which are implicated in heart attacks and stroke. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. How Tobacco Smoke Causes Disease: The Biology and Behavioral Basis for Smoking-Attributable Disease: A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2010.) According to the 2014 U.S. Surgeon General’s Report, The Health Consequences of Smoking—50 Years of Progress, secondhand smoke exposure causes stroke in nonsmokers. The report also found that since the 1964 Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health, 2.5 million nonsmokers have died from diseases caused by tobacco smoke. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Health Consequences of Smoking—50 Years of Progress. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2014.)
Numerous studies have found that tobacco smoke is a major contributor to indoor air pollution, and that breathing secondhand smoke (also known as environmental tobacco smoke) is a cause of disease in healthy nonsmokers, including heart disease, stroke, respiratory disease, and lung cancer. The National Cancer Institute determined in 1999 (Monograph #10) that secondhand smoke is responsible for the early deaths of approximately 53,000 Americans annually. (National Cancer Institute (NCI), “Health effects of exposure to environmental tobacco smoke: the report of the California Environmental Protection Agency. Smoking and Tobacco Control Monograph 10,” Bethesda, MD: National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute (NCI), August 1999.)
Based on a finding by the California Environmental Protection Agency in 2005, the California Air Resources Board has determined that secondhand smoke is a toxic air contaminant, finding that exposure to secondhand smoke has serious health effects, including low birth-weight babies; sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS); increased respiratory infections in children; asthma in children and adults; lung cancer, sinus cancer, and breast cancer in younger, premenopausal women; heart disease; and death. (California Air Resources Board (ARB), “Appendix II Findings of the Scientific Review Panel: Findings of the Scientific Review Panel on Proposed Identification of Environmental Tobacco Smoke as a Toxic Air Contaminant as adopted at the Panel’s June 24, 2005 Meeting,” California Air Resources Board (ARB), September 12, 2005.)
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has determined that the risk of acute myocardial infarction and coronary heart disease associated with exposure to tobacco smoke is non-linear at low doses, increasing rapidly with relatively small doses such as those received from secondhand smoke or actively smoking one or two cigarettes a day, and has warned that all patients at increased risk of coronary heart disease or with known coronary artery disease should avoid all indoor environments that permit smoking. (Pechacek, Terry F.; Babb, Stephen, “Commentary: How acute and reversible are the cardiovascular risks of secondhand smoke?” British Medical Journal 328: 980-983, April 24, 2004.)
Unregulated high-tech smoking devices, commonly referred to as electronic cigarettes, or “e-cigarettes,” closely resemble and purposefully mimic the act of smoking by having users inhale vaporized liquid nicotine created by heat through an electronic ignition system. After testing a number of e-cigarettes from two leading manufacturers, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) determined that various samples tested contained not only nicotine but also detectable levels of known carcinogens and toxic chemicals, including tobacco-specific nitrosamines and diethylene glycol, a toxic chemical used in antifreeze. The FDA’s testing also suggested that “quality control processes used to manufacture these products are inconsistent or non-existent.” ([n.a.], “Summary of results: laboratory analysis of electronic cigarettes conducted by FDA,” Food and Drug Administration (FDA), July 22, 2009.) According to a more recent study, electronic cigarette emissions are made up of a high concentration of ultrafine particles, and the particle concentration is higher than in conventional tobacco cigarette smoke. (Fuoco, F.C.; Buonanno, G.; Stabile, L.; Vigo, P., “Influential parameters on particle concentration and size distribution in the mainstream of e-cigarettes,” Environmental Pollution 184: 523-529, January 2014.) Electronic cigarettes produce an aerosol or vapor of undetermined and potentially harmful substances, which may appear similar to the smoke emitted by traditional tobacco products. Their use in workplaces and public places where smoking of traditional tobacco products is prohibited creates concern and confusion and leads to difficulties in enforcing the smoking prohibitions.
According to the American Nonsmokers’ Rights Foundation, more than 1,300 colleges and universities in the United States have adopted smokefree or tobacco-free policies and this number is rising steadily. The American College Health Association “encourages colleges and universities to be diligent in their efforts to achieve a 100% indoor and outdoor campus-wide tobacco-free environment.” The United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) created the Tobacco-Free College Campus Initiative (TFCCI), later administered by the American Cancer Society, in partnership with CVS Health, as the Tobacco-Free Generation Campus Initiative (TFGCI), to promote and support the adoption and implementation of tobacco-free policies at universities, colleges, and other institutions of higher learning across the United States.
The smoking of tobacco, hookahs, or marijuana and the use of electronic cigarettes are forms of air pollution and constitute both a danger to health and a material public nuisance.
Accordingly, the _____________ [College/University Governing Body] finds and declares that the purposes of this policy are (1) to protect the public health and welfare by prohibiting smoking and the use of tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes, on the _____________ [College or University] campus; (2) to guarantee the right of nonsmokers to breathe smokefree air, while recognizing that the need to breathe smokefree air shall have priority over the desire to smoke; and (3) to encourage a healthier, more productive living/learning environment for all members of our campus community.
Section 2. Definitions.
A. “Electronic Smoking Device” means any product containing or delivering nicotine or any other substance intended for human consumption that can be used by a person in any manner for the purpose of inhaling vapor or aerosol from the product. The term includes any such device, whether manufactured, distributed, marketed, or sold as an e-cigarette, e-cigar, e-pipe, e-hookah, or vape pen, or under any other product name or descriptor.
B. “Hookah” means a water pipe and any associated products and devices which are used to produce fumes, smoke, and/or vapor from the burning of material including, but not limited to, tobacco, shisha, or other plant matter.
C. “Smoking” means inhaling, exhaling, burning, or carrying any lighted or heated cigar, cigarette, or pipe, or any other lighted or heated tobacco or plant product intended for inhalation, including hookahs and marijuana, whether natural or synthetic, in any manner or in any form. “Smoking” also includes the use of an electronic smoking device which creates an aerosol or vapor, in any manner or in any form, or the use of any oral smoking device for the purpose of circumventing the prohibition of smoking in this Article.
D. “Tobacco Product” means any substance containing tobacco leaf, including but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, pipe tobacco, hookah tobacco, snuff, chewing tobacco, dipping tobacco, bidis, blunts, clove cigarettes, or any other preparation of tobacco; and any product or formulation of matter containing biologically active amounts of nicotine that is manufactured, sold, offered for sale, or otherwise distributed with the expectation that the product or matter will be introduced into the human body by inhalation; but does not include any cessation product specifically approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in treating nicotine or tobacco dependence.
Section 3. Smoking and Tobacco Use Prohibited on _____________ [I] Campus.
In light of the above findings, the _____________ [Name of College/University] campus shall be entirely tobacco-free.
The Tobacco-Free Policy applies to all _____________ [Name of College/University] facilities, property, and vehicles, owned or leased, regardless of location. Smoking and the use of tobacco products shall not be permitted in any enclosed place, including, but not limited to, all offices, classrooms, hallways, waiting rooms, restrooms, meeting rooms, community areas, performance venues and private residential space within _____________ [college or university] housing. Smoking and the use of tobacco products shall also be prohibited outdoors on all _____________ [college or university] campus property, including, but not limited to, parking lots, paths, fields, sports/recreational areas, and stadiums, as well as in all personal vehicles while on campus. This policy applies to all students, faculty, staff, and other persons on campus, regardless of the purpose for their visit.
Section 4. Promotion and Sale of Tobacco Products Prohibited on _____________ [College or University] Campus.
In further recognition of the incompatibility of _____________ [Name of College/University]’s educational mission and the promotion of tobacco products:
No tobacco-related advertising or sponsorship shall be permitted on _____________ [college or university] property, at _____________ [college or university]-sponsored events, or in publications produced by the _____________ [college or university], with the exception of advertising in a newspaper or magazine that is not produced by the _____________ [college or university] and which is lawfully sold, bought, or distributed on _____________ [college or university] property. For the purposes of this policy, “tobacco related” applies to the use of a tobacco brand or corporate name, trademark, logo, symbol, or motto, selling message, recognizable pattern or colors, or any other indicia of product identical to or similar to, or identifiable with, those used for any brand of tobacco products or company which manufactures tobacco products.
No tobacco products or paraphernalia shall be sold or distributed as samples on university grounds, either in vending machines, the student union, or any area on campus.
Section 5. Dissemination of Policy; Signage
Copies of this policy shall be distributed to all faculty and staff and shall be included with information given to all admitted students. Information about the policy and how to comply with it shall also be posted on the _____________ [Name of College/University] website. Announcements concerning the policy and any changes to it shall be printed in campus newspapers and posted on the _____________ [Name of College/University] website to insure that everyone fully understands the policy. Signs prohibiting smoking and the use of tobacco products shall be posted at all points of entry to the _____________ [college or university] campus and at all _____________ [college or university] building entrances. No ashtrays shall be provided at any location on campus.
Section 6. Transition Period.
This policy is being announced _____________ days prior to its implementation in order to give smokers time to adapt to its restrictions and to facilitate a smooth transition to a tobacco-free environment. On-site smoking cessation programs shall be made available to assist and encourage individuals who wish to quit smoking. Questions and problems regarding this policy should be handled through existing departmental administrative channels and administrative procedures.
Section 7. Enforcement of Policy; Penalties
This policy shall be enforced by the _____________ [Campus Police or applicable administrative department]. Each violation of this policy is punishable by a fine not exceeding fifty dollars ($50) and/or appropriate campus disciplinary procedures.
This Policy shall be effective on _____________ [Date].
Signature of Chief Administrator