In a message sent out Tuesday morning, president of Temple University, Richard Englert,
outlined the school’s new policy toward tobacco use on campus.
He wrote, “the goal of the policy is to eliminate the use of all tobacco products in all indoor and outdoor spaces at each Temple campus in the United States.”
Not only are combustibles such as cigarettes and cigars included in the ban, but so are “electronic nicotine devices” like vapes and Juuls.
Temple junior, Elliot Gray, told Temple Update, “I definitely, think there could be more courtesy shown to people who don’t smoke from people who do smoke.”
On the other hand, Temple senior, Daniela Quintero-Rodriguez, argued that any attempt toward
banning the consumption of tobacco on campus was simply unrealistic.
She argued, “I kind of think it’s a little far fetched. I feel like we are in the middle of a city and people are gonna walk through this space smoking whether you like it or not.”
Both Elliot and Daniela are smokers themselves.
Laura Siminoff, PhD., Dean of the College of Public Health, is one of the main figures responsible for the implementation of the school’s new ban.
She and her team published a report in May of 2018, which outlined rates of smoking on Temple’s campus and the steps they felt the University should take to improve student and community health in North Philadelphia. Chief
among the report’s recommendations was the complete banning of tobacco in and around university buildings.
It’s important to note that Temple is not exactly ahead of the curve with this new ban. Schools like the University of South Carolina and Syracuse both take disciplinary action if caught smoking on campus. Meanwhile, Ohio State takes a less punitive and more educational approach to tackling tobacco use, with students being pointed towards methods of quitting when caught.
Dean Siminoff agrees with Ohio State’s approach more than others. She has asked Temple to make “cessation, cessation products, cessation educational programs available to everyone.”
Don’t expect to see changes overnight, however. The dean felt it important to point out that even with the July 1st deadline approaching, there will be a gradual implementation of Temple’s smoking ban.
She says the focus of the ban will be on educating students and the public, not punishing them.