Springfield Campus

Benedictine University at Springfield Smoke-Free Campus

Smoke-Free Policy

I. DEFINITION

For the purpose of this policy:

Smoking is defined as the lighting, burning, or use of tobacco or any other material in any type of smoking device or equipment, including electronic cigarettes.

II. BACKGROUND AND RATIONALE

Benedictine University at Springfield strives to promote the health, well-being and safety of students, faculty, staff and visitors. Second-hand smoke has been identified by the Surgeon General to be a cause of preventable diseases. Benedictine University at Springfield encourages students, faculty and staff to support and use smoking cessation programs. In order to support the health and welfare of all, the campus will be free of second-hand smoke.Each year, more than 440,000 people die prematurely of diseases caused by smoking, accounting for 1 out of every 5 deaths in the United States (CDC 2010). Use of cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, cigars, pipes, and other tobacco products lead to disease and death. In addition to causing direct health hazards, smoking contributes to institutional costs in other ways, such as cleaning and maintenance costs.

III. POLICY

  1. Effective August 1, 2014, smoking is prohibited on the Benedictine University at Springfield campus.
  2. For the purpose of this policy, it applies to all smoking products identified in the previously mentioned definition.
  3. Smoking is prohibited
    1. In all interior space on the Benedictine University at Springfield campus;
    2. On all outside property or grounds of the Benedictine University at Springfield campus.
    3. In all Benedictine University at Springfield transportation vehicles.
    4. In all indoor and outdoor athletic facilities owned by Benedictine University at Springfield.

D.Smoking is permitted in the driver or passenger area of personal vehicles, provided all waste products are disposed of properly (no littering).

  1. Organizers and attendees at public events, such as conferences, meetings, public lectures, social events, cultural events, and sporting events using Benedictine University at Springfield facilities will be required to abide by the smoking policy and procedure. Organizers of such events are responsible for communicating the policy to attendees and for enforcing this policy.
  2. The University prohibits the campus-controlled advertising, sale, or free sampling of smoking products on campus.
  3. Campus organizations are prohibited from accepting money or gifts from nicotine based companies.

IV. COMPLIANCE

Adherence to the policy cited above is the responsibility of all Benedictine University at Springfield students, faculty, staff, and visitors. It is expected that all students, faculty, staff, and visitors to campus comply with this policy. Members of our campus community are empowered to respectfully inform others about the policy in an ongoing effort to enhance awareness and encourage a culture of compliance.

An individual who feels that there has been a violation of this policy may invoke the following actions:

    1. The individual should attempt to resolve the problem informally by requesting that the individual comply with the procedure.
    2. If direct appeal fails and the behavior persists, the individual should contact the Dean of Students.
    3. Repeat offenses by the same person shall be dealt with through already established administrative/disciplinary policies and procedures. Violations could result in referral to the appropriate University officials for disciplinary action in accordance with established student, staff, and/or faculty codes of conduct and procedures.

-With permission from Butler Community College, parts of this proposal have been used as a basis for the Benedictine University at Springfield smoke-free campus policy.

 


When will the policy go into effect?

The policy will be effective beginning August 1, 2014.

Why is our campus going smoke-free?

Benedictine University at Springfield strives to provide a learning community which promotes the health, well-being and safety of students, faculty, staff and visitors. Second-hand smoke has been identified by the Surgeon General to be a cause of preventable diseases.

What process was involved in making this decision?

The Student Government Association brought this policy to the President of Benedictine University at Springfield during the 2013-2014 academic year. Since that point, many steps have been taken to ensure that all opinions and perspectives were taken into consideration before a decision was made.

SGA worked diligently to research a smoke-free policy, both through research and attending a conference to discuss with and learn from other schools. The Sangamon County Health Department was also consulted in this learning stage. SGA asked students, faculty and staff to vote on their opinion of going smoke-free. Voting results were in favor to become a smoke-free campus. The Student Government Association presented this information to the President of Benedictine University at Springfield. The President then asked the faculty and staff their opinion on the decision. After deliberation, a decision was made to make Benedictine University at Springfield a smoke-free campus.

How will the policy be enforced?

Adherence to the policy is the responsibility of all Benedictine University at Springfield students, faculty, staff, and visitors. It is expected that all students, faculty, staff, and visitors to campus comply with this policy. Members of our campus community are empowered to respectfully inform others about the policy in an ongoing effort to enhance awareness and encourage a culture of compliance. An individual who feels that there has been a violation of this policy may invoke the following actions:

  • The individual should attempt to resolve the problem informally by requesting that the individual comply with the procedure.
  • If direct appeal fails and the behavior persists, the individual should contact the Dean of Students.
  • Repeat offenses by the same person shall be dealt with through already established administrative/disciplinary policies and procedures.
  • Violations could result in referral to the appropriate University officials for disciplinary action in accordance with established student, staff, and/or faculty codes of conduct and procedures.

What about other tobacco products?

Only those products that produce smoke or vapors are considered a violation of this policy.

Isn't smoking a personal right?

Benedictine University at Springfield strives to promote the health, well-being and safety of students, faculty, staff and visitors. While smoking may be a personal right, when it affects others through second-hand smoke, it becomes a larger community issue.

Is second-hand smoke really that much of a problem?

Second-hand smoke causes direct health hazards.Smoking also contributes to institutional costs in other ways, such as cleaning and maintenance costs.

Does this policy extend to other campus-owned property?

As stated in the policy, smoking is prohibited: in all interior space on the Benedictine University at Springfield campus; on all outside property or grounds of the Benedictine University at Springfield campus; in all Benedictine University at Springfield transportation vehicles; and in all indoor and outdoor athletic facilities owned by Benedictine University at Springfield.

Will people be able to smoke in their own vehicles within the smoke-free campus?

Smoking is permitted in the driver or passenger area of personal vehicles, provided that all waste products are disposed of properly.

How will people know where they can and cannot smoke?

Signs will be posted across campus, but smoking by students, faculty, staff, contractors, vendors and visitors is prohibited.

Will there be designated smoking areas on campus?

No. The campus will smoke-free effective August 1, 2014.

What about sporting events or other public events?

Smoking is prohibited on all indoor and outdoor athletic facilities owned by Benedictine University at Springfield.

Will I be fired or dismissed from the university if I don't quit smoking?

Individuals who violate this policy are subject to university sanctions. Violations could result in disciplinary action in accordance with the established student, staff, and/or faculty codes of conduct and procedures.

What is the campus doing for students and employees who want to quit using tobacco products?

Benedictine University at Springfield will work to provide resources for students and employees who are working towards quitting or wish to do so. Research shows that many successful quitters develop a plan before they begin.

Resources to stop smoking:

Illinois Tobacco Quit Line, Illinois Department of Public Health and American Lung Association of Illinois, 1-866-QUIT-YES (1-866-784-8937). A free resource that offers a free "quit kit" as well as support via online chat or phone with tobacco-treatment counselors.

Smokefree.gov, a website of the National Cancer Institute, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Besides information on how to quit, it offers free services that include a text messaging program and ways to show support for friends and family who are trying to quit.

Tips From Former Smokers, a free website of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that includes stories from people who quit successfully.

Become An Ex, a website developed by a nonprofit organization in partnership with the Mayo Clinic. Its free services include tools to create a personalized plan to stop smoking, blogs and online discussions.