A new policy banning tobacco use on Tulane University property is being phased in over the next year, and The Center for Wellness and Health Promotion (theWELL) and TU Wellness are ready to help students, staff members and faculty members quit the habit before the campus becomes smoke-free.
A new smoking policy will start taking effect in the fall of 2014, and the university is providing resources to help members of the Tulane community kick the habit for good. (Photo from iStockphoto.com)
“The new policy will start in the fall of 2014, but penalties won’t start until the following January,” says Scott Tims, director of theWELL at Tulane University Student Health Services.
The current policy passed in 2008 forbids smoking in any university building and only allows smoking at butt receptacles, which are placed at least 25 feet from building entrances. Tims says that while the current policy was aimed to reduce nonsmokers’ exposure to second-hand smoke, the new policy will focus on helping members of the Tulane community quit smoking for good.
“There are resources campuswide and in the community,” he says. TheWELL will provide free smoking cessation coaching for faculty, staff and students. Additionally, students will be able to receive free nicotine replacement patches and gum. These will be available at cost for faculty and staff members.
Health insurance plans may cover nicotine replacement therapy, and there’s a quit smoking hotline, 1-800-QUIT-LA, that is a free resource through the state of Louisiana.
“The new policy was not designed to be anti-smoker, but to help make our community healthier,” Tims says. “We wanted to provide tools and resources to help people change their tobacco use, so we are working to provide comprehensive cessation services to our entire community.”
Chase Vicenzi is a junior at Tulane who is studying communication and political science.