Smoking and Tobacco Use on University Property

Policy Number: I.14
Policy Level: Operating Policy

Originally Issued: October 31, 2013
Reviewed:  November 11, 2016
Revised:  March 7, 2019

Policy Owner: VP for Financial Affairs
Policy Implementation: VP for Financial Affairs

I. Policy Statement and Purpose

Athens State University is committed to providing a safe and healthy learning and working environment for its employees, students and visitors.  The University recognizes the right of persons to make their own decisions about their personal use of tobacco products away from the University and is sensitive to the needs and rights of smokers.  However, the University’s primary concern is for the protection of the non-smoking population.

The purpose of this policy is to promote an environment that encourages health and well-being.  Therefore, effective May 20, 2019, smoking and the use of tobacco products on University property including but not limited to, facilities, properties, grounds, and any University-owned, leased vehicle will be prohibited.

II.  Definitions and Application

Tobacco Products – All forms of tobacco and smoke-related products, including but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco, snuff, water pipes (hookahs), bidis, kreteks, smokeless tobacco, electronic cigarettes and other devices utilized for the ingestion, combustion, inhalation of vapors, or other use of tobacco.

University Property – property that is owned, operated, occupied, controlled or leased by the University or a University-related organization.

This policy applies to all faculty, staff, students, visitors and contractors.  Organizers and attendees at public events, such as conferences, meetings, public lectures, social events, cultural events, and athletic events using University-owned/controlled facilities, grounds, and properties are required to abide by this policy.

The advertising, sale or free sampling of tobacco products via University-owned/controlled venues, signage, and outlets is prohibited.

III. Allowances

Use of tobacco products may be permitted for controlled research, educational, theatrical, religious or ceremonial purposes with prior written approval from the President of the University.  If approved, the permission is only for the duration of the specific study, performance, or ceremony.

IV. Enforcement

Anyone seen using any tobacco products on University property should be reminded of this policy and requested to discard the tobacco product.  If the tobacco user does not comply, this violation of the policy may result in corrective action, including the following:

  1.   Students who refuse to comply will be referred to the Vice President for Enrollment and Student Services.
  2.   Employees who refuse to comply may be disciplined for violation of this policy consistent with the provisions of the Employee Disciplinary Procedures.
  3. Others that refuse to comply with this policy may be asked by Campus Security to leave campus.

V. Responsibility for this Operating Policy

Policy Owner

As part of the initial approval of this policy by the President and subsequent to the original dissemination of the policy, the President has assigned the Vice Presidents as the policy owners for the ongoing evaluation, review, and approval of this policy.  Subsequent reviews and revisions to this policy must be in accordance with approved operating policy procedures and processes.

This policy will be reviewed every three years or more frequently as needed by the Policy Owner.  Revisions will be reviewed/affirmed by the Cabinet and approved by the University President.  This policy will be updated/published in the University’s Policy Library.

Responsibility for Policy Implementation

The President has assigned the responsibility of implementing this policy to the Vice President for Financial Affairs.