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Campus smoking ban is not enforcable

By Mike Meiler
On March 8, 2012


Last semester, the college senate passed legislation in an effort to make Buffalo State
a smoke-free campus.
This semester, that legislation has gone into soft enforcement. Steps have been
taken to educate students about the dangers of smoking. Posters have been put up
around campus preaching about the negative effects of cigarettes. Programs to help
students and faculty quit smoking are being planned.
Has anyone noticed?
When we return to school in the fall, the legislation will be under hard enforcement
and smoking will be completely banned.
How does the University Police Department plan on enforcing the ban?
Is every person who lights up on campus going to be ticketed? What about students
walking to their car or pulling out of a parking lot?
There are so many smokers on campus that a complete ban is unrealistic. Mass
ticketing will make the ban seem like an attempt for the campus to bring in some
extra dough and will be met with anger on the part of the student body, which
benefits nobody.
This move was in part inspired by the University at Buffalo's smoking ban which, so
far, has not deterred many of UB's smokers. So far our campus officials have given
us little reason to believe that a smoke-free Buff State would fare any better.
While a complete ban seems ill-advised, there is no fault in the campus making an
attempt to help students and faculty members quit.
Unfortunately, educational posters won't do the job, and anything else seems
Students are taught the dangers of smoking throughout their childhoods. If they
choose to smoke now, chances are they're well aware of the risks.
Programs to help support those who want to kick the addiction but can't on their
own are probably the most effective tool the school has if it wants to fight smoking.
It's almost a definite that there are students and faculty members on campus who
want to quit but don't feel they can do it by themselves; support programs that
provide tools to help fight addiction might help to push those people into quitting.
If the ban is an attempt to improve the health on campus by pushing students
and faculty toward quitting, there are better ways for the school to go about it. A
complete ban will be met with disdain, particularly from students.
Giving people support, an easy solution and the option of accepting help might be a
little more successful.

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