A presidential message on the new St. Cloud State tobacco-use policy:
After a year of campus-wide discussions about St. Cloud State University’s smoking policy, the University will begin transitioning to a tobacco-free campus.
Beginning Aug. 1, tobacco use (smoking and smokeless) will be permitted only in outdoor designated, clearly marked areas on campus. Effective Aug. 1, 2012, the campus will be tobacco free.
St. Cloud State will offer education, awareness, support and cessation services to the campus community. Exceptions for tobacco use during the transition and after the campus becomes tobacco-free will be allowed in accordance with the Minnesota Clean Indoor Air Act, which permits tobacco use in traditional Native American ceremonies, scientific studies and theatrical productions. Further, tobacco use will be permitted inside private vehicles on University property as long as respect for individuals and the environment is demonstrated. Efforts will be made via signage, print and other means of communication to inform the campus community and visitors of the policy change.
Since October, a 13-member Smoking Policy Review Task Force consisting of faculty, staff and students has reviewed and researched existing policy and public health information, kept the campus informed of findings and sought broad input through a variety of mechanisms. I want to take this opportunity to thank the members of this dedicated group for their thorough and inclusive approach to a complex issue.
I appointed the task force in response to a resolution passed March 17, 2010, by the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board of Trustees, encouraging each college and university in the system to consult with its students and employees about additional steps their institutions might take regarding tobacco use. To date, St. Cloud State is the fifth of the seven four-year MnSCU universities to enact a tobacco-free policy.
Information about the review process, the policy and supportive resources are available on the Smoking Policy website.
The work of the Smoking Policy Review Task Force was supported by grant funds from Stearns County Human Services Public Health Division as part of the Statewide Health Improvement Program.
Your cooperation is appreciated as we move toward becoming a tobacco-free campus.
Earl H. Potter III
St. Cloud State University