WashU to go smoke free by summer of 2010
By Kavita Kumar
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Washington University just announced that it will go smoke free by July 2010.
That means that smoking and tobacco use will be prohibited everywhere on campus, including on all university-owned and -managed properties.
“We know it will be difficult for some in the university community,” Chancellor Mark Wrighton said in a news release. “But we believe that this is the right and best policy for the health of all who live, work and study at Washington University.”
WashU already bans smoking in all of its buildings. And in 2007, the School of Medicine banned tobacco use on its property.
To help aid in the transition, the school will begin offering free smoking-cessation programs to students, faculty and staff members. Smoking-cessation medicine will also be given for free to students who want it and who are covered by the university’s student health insurance.
Between now and next summer, three university committees will be looking at how to best communicate the new policy as well as devising solutions to possible obstacles in implementing the new policy.
St. Charles Community College became a tobacco-free campus in 2007.
And the University of Missouri-Columbia banned smoking inside all of its buildings in January. The school also has prohibited smoking within 20 feet of building entrances, exits, windows and fresh-air intake systems. By 2011, Mizzou plans to have smoking in designated areas only. Chancellor Brady Deaton has said that the ultimate goal is to have the campus smoke-free by 2014.
Other local universities have been considering similar bans. For example, a student group at St. Louis University has been pushing for a similar policy on its campus for more than a year now.
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