Campus smoking policy set to change
Published: Friday, February 25, 2011
Updated: Friday, February 25, 2011 14:02
In response to complaints about smokers and second-hand smoke on Cosumnes River College campus – students and faculty will now be required to smoke in designated areas, effective April, according to members of a campus Smoking Guidelines Implementation Task Group.
The task group wanted to reinforce certain areas on which students and staff members are able to smoke on campus with the respect for all other individuals and the environment.
"What we're trying to accomplish is that if you're a student or a staff member on this campus you ought not have to breath someone else's smoke if you do not want to," said Vice President of Administrative Services and Student Support Don Wallace, also the coordinator of the task group.
Currently, smokers are allowed to smoke anywhere on campus that is 30 feet from a building. Many smokers disregard the 30-foot rule, said 20-year-old Aa'ron Taddesse, a mathematical biologist major.
The new rules will limit areas where smoking is permitted. These areas should not include a large amount of the site and importantly all smoking areas must be kept clean.
CRC's task group have discussed and agreed that near the College Center and the open alley by the library would benefit the smokers and the non-smokers to be potential smoking zones.
"Me being a 30-year smoker, I chose to join the task group because I wanted to put a smoker's perspective on the committee," said Sociology Professor and task group member Paul Zisk. "The new policy would benefit the campus because students and faculty don't have to look at smoke butts on the ground and they don't have to walk through second-hand smoke."
Reaction to the new smoking rules were mixed.
Twenty-year-old Sterling O'Neal, a health science major, agrees with the smoking policy change.
"I think it's a personal choice but personally I don't approve of students smoking on campus," he said. "My parents used to smoke and as a result I have severely bad asthma."
One student who smokes, 30-year-old James Clarkson, a television production major, said he did not like the designated areas for smokers. "I understand the dangers of second-hand smoke but when you start limiting things to designated areas it won't be pleasing for a number of students in those areas without any protection from bad weather," he said.
Barkley said that she preferred the campus to go smoke free. The smoking rule changes are a good first step to improving students' health, Barkley said.
"The changes that are going to occur on campus are going to help the students, not hurt them," said Barkley.