YPSILANTI, Mich. (AP) – Eastern Michigan University plans to go tobacco-free starting July 1.
The policy approved last week will prohibit smoking and the use of tobacco products in or on all university-owned, operated or leased buildings and facilities, including vehicles.
The grounds of the school’s Ypsilanti campus will be tobacco-free, as will the grounds of any off-campus facilities owned or leased in total by the university. The policy includes sidewalks that cut through campus or between buildings and extends up to campus perimeter.
The impetus for the policy change began in winter 2014, with a student-led initiative that sought to protect people from tobacco use and secondhand smoke.
The school plans to launch an implementation effort in January that involves communication and marketing as well as health promotion and education. Officials also will work on compliance and community relations strategies and signs about the new policy.
School President Susan Martin says in a statement that: “This policy is, above all, intended to encourage students, employees and visitors to improve their health by eliminating their use of tobacco products.”
Hundreds of other schools in the U.S. have similar tobacco-free policies, including many colleges and universities in the state.
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