Special to the Logos
On the University of the Incarnate Word campus, several signs read: “Proud to Be Smoke & Tobacco Free.”
So far. So good.
At least according to Vice President Doug Endsley, whose Business and Finance office oversees enforcement of the no-smoking ban via campus police and human resources.
“For the most part compliance appears to be good,” Endsley wrote in a statement to the Logos. “Regarding enforcement, we have not had any employees referred to HR for violation of the smoke-free campus policy. To date no students have been reported to Student Conduct for such violations either.”
An announcement was sent to the UIW community last spring about the new Smoke and Tobacco Free policy that was going into effect Aug. 1 “on all UIW U.S. property that is owned, leased, occupied or controlled by the University.”
The ban was needed, according to the announcement, because UIW “is committed to providing a safe, healthy working and learning environment for students, faculty and staff.”
The new policy prohibits “the use of any smoking or tobacco products including but not limited to cigarettes, cigars, pipe tobacco, snuff, chewing tobacco, electronic cigarettes, smokeless tobacco and hookahs but not including cessation products containing nicotine specifically approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in treating nicotine or tobacco dependence.”
According to a report by the Surgeon General, tobacco is the leading cause of preventable disability, disease and death in the nation. Worldwide, tobacco use causes nearly 6 million deaths per year, and current trends show tobacco use will cause more than 8 million deaths annually by 2030, according to the 2011 World Health Organization’s report on the global tobacco epidemic.
UIW’s new policy applies to “all employees, students, university affiliates, visitors and contractors,” according to the news release.