Student Input Needed for Smoking Policy
Published: Thursday, September 6, 2012
Updated: Thursday, November 15, 2012 00:11
“I think it is pretty much as bad as the Second World War,” said Kenyon smoker Lucy Tiven ’13 when asked her thoughts on the campus’ newly revised smoking policy.
Passed by Student Council in February 2012 and later approved by President S. Georgia Nugent, the policy revision stipulates that “smoking in areas immediately adjacent to building entrances is prohibited by law,” said Senate Co-Chair Monty Clark ’13.
The policy will establish two designated smoking zones near academic areas of campus, which the student body will decide upon in the upcoming months. Smoking will still be permitted in residential areas, though it should not take place immediately adjacent to building entrances, and should be at least 15 feet from all entrances, exits and windows.
Former Campus Senate Co-Chair Gavin McGimpsey ’11 first introduced the idea of a smoke-free campus before the creation of the current policy. Though not explicit in the revised smoking policy, “understanding the national trending health concern ... we will slowly move to being a smoke-free campus by 2016,” Clark said.
Student Council President Faith McDuffie ’13 stressed the need for student input to decide the locations of the two smoking zones, as well as the desire to relay information to the student body so they are not caught off guard.
“[Campus] Safety is there to enforce rules; [Community Advisors] are there to enforce rules too, but it’s also up to students,” McDuffie said. “Hopefully, this policy revision, or the buzz about it, will ... get students to have it in their mind and will remind them that these are the rules and they’re in place for a reason.”
Dean of Students Hank Toutain has asked students to contribute their thoughts on setting designated zones. Zones cannot be in front of an entrance or exit to a building.
“Senate is trying to be sensitive to the viewpoints of a wide number of students and community members by both respecting personal freedom, but also [respecting] the right to have more control over one’s personal health,” Clark said. “This policy change is our compromise of both concerns, where people still have the freedom to partake in either option, or both.”
Although the policy will go into effect this January, Student Council is still open to alternate viewpoints.
“There is always room for student input on things; it’s never a done deal. Students always have a voice, and I encourage them to use it,” said McDuffie. “Come to Student Council meetings, talk to their Student Council reps, talk to their Campus Senate reps, talk to anyone on Student Council. That’s what we are there for.”