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The Michigan State University Campus is Tobacco Free

MSU University Physician David Weismantel, MD MS

A tobacco-free ordinance for the Michigan State University campus went into effect August 15, 2016, and is part of an ongoing effort to ensure the MSU community enjoys a healthy campus.

“It applies everywhere on our campus and all the property that the university oversees, and it includes anything that you may smoke like cigarettes, vaporizers or e-cigarettes,” says MSU University Physician David Weismantel, MD MS.  “And the ban also includes chewing tobacco and other forms of oral tobacco.  And it certainly includes cigars.”

Dr. Weismantel says the tobacco ban is part of a larger overall health effort on campus.

And he adds that MSU is committed to supporting the health and wellness of all members of the campus community and offers numerous resources for those who need help quitting tobacco. Several tobacco cessation programs are currently offered free of charge to students, faculty, staff and spouses/same sex domestic partners of employees.

“And for people who may be visiting campus and be unaware of the ban, nicotine replacement products are available at several of the Spartys locations, including in the residence halls.”

It is important to note that MSU leadership is not focusing on this policy from an enforcement perspective but rather from an educational one focused on embracing a healthy culture on campus. However, there will be enforcement mechanisms for students via the campus judicial system and employees via Human Resources.

“It’s educational to let people know that tobacco is not part of a healthy lifestyle and that, on this campus, we will be tobacco free.  That would be the first level of enforcement, just being notified by someone from our campus community or perhaps by the police.

“In the end, though, if you would continue with tobacco use, there is the possibility of actually being a ticket under the ordinance by the police.” 

There are no exceptions to the ordinance for home football or basketball games, adds Dr. Weismantel.

“We worked the athletic department as we put this policy together and have their full support in this effort.”

He doesn’t expect tickets to be issued to tailgaters enjoying the occasional cigar.

“Although the people next to you may let you know that this really is a tobacco-free campus, and we’re hoping that over time we’ll see less and less of that behavior.”

MSU Today airs Sunday afternoons at 4:00 on AM 870.

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