The Northern Kentucky University Board of Regents voted unanimously Wednesday to direct the adoption of a tobacco-free campus policy. The board’s action authorizes NKU President Geoffrey Mearns to develop the details of the policy and to appoint a Tobacco-Free Campus Task Force to develop recommendations for the transition and the policy’s implementation. The transition process will include students, faculty, staff and could take up to 18 months
Northern Kentucky University's Campus could be tobacco-free in 2014. The Board of Regents will vote on a tobacco free proposal Wednesday.
Director of Wellness Karen Campbell says this will be different than the current policy for a smoke-free campus. "Right now we are working under the Clean Air Act of 2006, which essentially has a number of designated smoking areas on our campus" said Campbell. "Movement for a tobacco free campus eliminates any areas for smoking it also eliminates and encourages no tobacco use in any form on our campus."
If the board approves the policy, a task force will be created to look at compliance, signage, communication, boundaries and cessation products and addiction management. She says the task force's work could take a year to a year-and-a-half, which means the policy would be put in place sometime in 2014.
If approved, NKU would join two other state schools, the University of Kentucky and Morehead State University, as tobacco-free. Several private schools in Kentucky, including Bellarmine, are also tobacco-free.
The University of Cincinnati currently prohibits smoking indoors and within 25 feet of all buildings. All smoking is banned on the medical campus. Last March The UC Faculty Senate and the Graduate Student Governance Association defeated a resolution to prepare the campus to become tobacco-free.