Sunday, February 7 , 2016, 6:09 am | Fair 43º

SBCC Prepares to Implement Campuswide Smoking, Tobacco Ban

The college's Board of Trustees approves a policy, effective Aug. 5, to eliminate all designated smoking areas

Cigarette butts litter the ground in a designated smoking area at Santa Barbara City College, where next month a policy takes effect banning smoking and tobacco on campus.
Cigarette butts litter the ground in a designated smoking area at Santa Barbara City College, where next month a policy takes effect banning smoking and tobacco on campus.  (Linda Sturesson / Noozhawk photo)

By Linda Sturesson, Noozhawk Intern | @NoozhawkNews |

Santa Barbara City College will become a completely smoke- and tobacco-free campus beginnng in August.

The college’s Board of Trustees voted late last month to eliminate all designated smoking areas, effective Aug. 5.

Banners with the message “Thank you for helping SBCC be a smoke-free campus” will be put up, and volunteers will work as informal ambassadors to remind people about the new policy.

The debate has been going on since Joe Sullivan, vice president of business services, proposed banning tobacco to the Academic Senate back in April.

The recommendation was forwarded to the Board of Trustees in June after the Academic Senate, Student Senate and College Planning Council all voted to support the proposal.

“As an academic institution, we have a responsibility to foster practices that address the education of the ‘whole’ student,” President Lori Gaskin said in a press release from the day of the voting. “Maintaining one’s health, fitness and well-being are an important part of being a student, and becoming a completely nonsmoking campus communicates this message with great clarity and commitment.”

Designated smoking areas have existed for nine years, but after multiple complaints about secondhand smoking and cigarette butts, Sullivan proposed the new rule.

One concern voiced by faculty and students regarding the new rules is that smokers are going to smoke, regardless of any ban.

“I understand that it’s a way of living, a way of being,” Gaskin told Noozhawk. “But what I focus on is health programs for our students and our employees.”

The Human Resources and Student Health Services departments offer free smoking-cessation programs to students, employees and faculty.

With the smoking ban, the campus will try to publicize these services more clearly than before.

“Change is difficult (and), we’re going to have to work together,” SBCC public information officer Joan Galvan said. “We just have to monitor behavior, and possibly present it in a positive way.”

Both Gaskin and Galvan said there will be a period of transition and adjustment to the new policy.

With the board’s recent action, SBCC becomes one of 1,159 schools in the United States to adopt a smoke-free policy.

It still isn’t clear what the punishment will be for smoking inside campus boundaries.

Noozhawk intern Linda Sturesson can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

» on 07.08.13 @ 10:37 PM

Good luck. It’s not gonna work. Sadly, seeing all the butts on the ground right next to the ash trays is the reason. The smokers made this happen. I forsee a drop in students at SBCC.

» on 07.09.13 @ 08:47 AM

This might prove to be as successful as closing the skateboard park was.

» on 07.17.13 @ 06:53 PM

I hope SBCC’s Board of Directors and SBCC President Lori Gaskin address the issue of eliminating toxins provided to students courtesy of SBCC, toxins that students are exposed to for long periods of time in enclosed classrooms and the SBCC library and are unable to avoid while attending SBCC; formaldehyde released from furnishings, carpeting, paneling, particle board, fiberboard and insulation that contains polyurethane resins, VOC’s (volatile organic compounds)from carpet adhesives,paints,and some laser printer cartridges, cleaning agents containing ethylene glycol ethers and terpenes, pesticides used indoors and outdoors, herbicides, fragrances used in deodorants, perfumes, and aftershave products that cause asthma and allergy attacks in susceptible students,mold in air ducts and air conditioning ducts, pollution from vehicles in enclosed parking structures, as well as airborne bacteria and viruses from infected students, etc, etc, as part of the “responsibility to foster practices that address the education of the ‘whole’ student” and to stress the importance of “maintaining one’s health, fitness and well-being”.

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