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CSUSB: Tobacco Free Campus

In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirement

of HSCI 660D: Special Topics and Health Science

Submitted to:
Dr. Henley

Submitted by:
Melissa Acuna
Julian C Sacdalan (Jay)

June 13, 2017

I.Executive Summary

Currently, California State University-San Bernardino (CSUSB) has a smoking

policy that permits smoking on campus, but only at the 14 designated smoking areas.

However, the designated smoking areas have many drawbacks to the health and

wellbeing of our campus community and the environment. Second-hand smoke is a

prevalent issue, as well as the littering of cigarette butts throughout campus. Not only do

cigarette butts make the campus look unsightly, they also release dangerous chemicals

long after they have been disposed of, including carcinogens.

In order to make CSUSB a safe and healthy place for all to enjoy, a 100% tobacco

free policy must be implemented on campus. This would include banning all tobacco

products such as cigarettes, cigars, and vapes. By doing so, we are reducing our

environmental impact, and reinforcing the idea of prevention and cessation. The earlier

we can prevent tobacco related behaviors, the sooner we can improve the health of our

campus community, and the surrounding cities.

II. Context and Importance of the Problem

Smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke have serious health effects for the

campus community and institutions of higher education. Without a 100% smoke-free

campus policy, we are putting non-smoking students, faculty, staff, and visitors in

danger. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in its scientific studies

have concluded that cigarette smoking can cause lung diseases, coronary heart

diseases, and cancer of the lungs, larynx, esophagus, mouth and bladder. The CDC also
reported that smoking is the leading cause preventable death in the U.S.; approximately

443,000 deaths every year due to tobacco-related illnesses.

According to the website,, every college and university should have a

way to protect their student body, faculty, staff, and visitors from the consequences of

smoking, and the effects of secondhand smoke. The exposure to secondhand smoke is

the third leading cause of preventable death in the US, killing at least 50,000 nonsmokers

each year. (Glantz and Parmley, 1991). Also, one of the biggest reasons that many

campuses around the United States have initiated a smoking or a tobacco ban on their

campuses is for the health of those who do not choose to smoke, but are being exposed.

According to another study done by the Surgeon General of the United States, the only

confirmed way to avoid and prevent the second-hand smoke exposure is by establishing

free smoke environments.

Smoke and cigarette butts are environmental hazards. Seo, et. al. (2011) wrote

that cigarette butts are the most littered item in the United States. In addition, these items

are extremely dangerous and unpleasant to the environment. There are thousands of

chemicals contained on the small filter which are released into the environment when

wet. Also, the cigarette butts and other tobacco-related trash not only affect our campus

aesthetic image, but can also can be washed into waterways by storm water

runoff. Moreover, without tobacco litter in CSUSB campus, the risk of fire and the cost of

cleaning tobacco can be reduced. It will also improve the campus appearance. According

to the article, Nevada Smoke-Free Campuses, campuses with 100% smoke-free,

campus-wide policies were shown to have 77% fewer cigarette butts on campus grounds

compared to colleges with no smoke-free policies. Based on the study done by Sawdey,

et al (2011), the litter at UC San Diego and San Diego State University showed that 80

volunteer hours, at least 31,000 butts were collected in both campuses. This represented

about 380 butts per volunteer per hour. Lastly, having tobacco free campus policy, indoor

air pollution and toxic air contaminant coming from the tobacco smoke will be eliminated.

Thus, CSUSBs need to adopt a tobacco free campus wide policy is crucial and


III. Critique of policy option(s)

The existing CSUSB tobacco policy states that smoking are prohibited on all

CSUSB property and in all indoor and outdoor spaces owned, leased, licensed, or

otherwise controlled by CSUSB, with the exception of designated smoking areas. This

policy is failing because there are 14 designated smoking areas, and still gives off the

impression that smoking is allowed everywhere. Also, this policy does not end the

exposure to secondhand smoke, litter, environmental pollution and toxic air

contaminant. Also, considering the legal smoking age in California is now 21, having a

smoking presence on campus is still harmful and impressionable to college students

who are still underage. This is an important detail considering the initiation of smoking is

complete by age 25 (Calfas et. al.,2011).

Currently, the state of California does not have a law is places that directly

influences smoking policies on any state sponsored college or university. Efforts have
been made to create a statewide ban through the proposal AB 1594. This proposal would

create a more defined smoking and tobacco ban on all UC, CSU and California

Community Colleges. More specifically, the bill would set standards for the enforcement

of that prohibition and to conduct a positive educational campaign to increase the

awareness of a tobacco- and smoke-free policy. Unfortunately, this bill did not pass as it

was vetoed by Governor Brown. The reason for doing so is because he believed The

governing boards of our public colleges and universities already have the authority and

are fully capable of setting smoking policies on their campuses. Since there is no

designated CSU wide system for tobacco bans, CSUSB should take initiate to make great

strides in creating a tobacco free campus, as several other CSUs have, such as California

State University, Fullerton.

Universities may also be weary to change to a tobacco free campus due to the

associated costs to implement the program, and the time frame. There will have to be a

series of meetings delegated to the proposal, which could span over months depending

on the structure of the University. However, the primary costs will be leading staff for

implementation installing permanent signage, removal of ashtrays, a new campus-wide

educational campaign and enforcement costs. The new policy could affect the school in

multiple levels on several departments, which could be a deterrent.

IV. Policy Recommendations

Promoting a total tobacco free CSUSB campus is the only way to ensure students

are not exposed to the dangers of second and third hand smoke, and that our environment

is free from smoking-related pollutants. The outcome will yield several beneficial short-
term and long-term outcomes. For one, students, faculty, and staff will be in a healthier

environment, free from the dangers of secondhand smoke. Next, CSUSB campus will

experience less litter of cigarette butts and reduce environmental risks such as chemical

breakdown and the possibilities of fires. Students who are caught smoking or engaging

in tobacco use on campus will be met with a variety of repercussions based on the amount

of offenses. If it is the first offense, students will be given a choice between small fine or

participating in a smoking cessation program available to them for free from student

health services. The fines would go towards the funding of these programs to help

students overcome their addictive behavior. If a student has multiple offenses, programs

would still be an option, as recovery is the main goal. However, higher monetary fines

would still be issued for repeat offenders. The main goal is to create a new social

environment that does not promote smoking. If there is little smoking presence among

campus individuals, the habit will not be seen as a norm, creating a smoke-free culture.

From a financial standpoint, creating a tobacco free campus would also prove to

be beneficial. The programs necessary for recovery already exists on campus, and are

funded through existing services such as the Student health center, which already collects

financial resources from student tuition. The programs would also be given monetary

assistance from the fines collected from individuals penalized from smoking on campus.

In addition, the long term financial savings for the University will prove to be beneficial.

For instance, having programs like health promotion and wellness together with the

comprehensive and effective cessation programs will benefit the entire CSUSB

community by maximizing its health and supporting successful behavior change. A

healthier campus community will create less illness, and will result in less absenteeism

from illness and long-term medical needs.

Overall, the main goal of a tobacco-free CSUSB is to protect the health of our

community, the environment, and to aid the campus community towards recovery if

necessary. The key is to making the social norm on campus be smoke-free, which means

having little presence through prevention, discipline, and recovery.


Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Cigarettes Smoking Among Adults in
tte-smoking-in-united-states.html. Accessed: June 4,, 2017.

Calfas, Karen J et al (2011). Smoke Free Policy Proposal. Unpublished article. 1-


Glantz, S. , & Parmley, W. (1991). Passive smoking and heart disease.

epidemiology, physiology, and biochemistry. Circulation, 83(1), 1.

Nevada Smoke Free Campus. (n.d.) Retrieved June 10, 2017. from

Sawdey, M. , Lindsay, R. , & Novotny, T. (2011). Smoke-free college campuses:

No ifs, ands or toxic butts. Tobacco Control, 20(Suppl 1), i21.

Seo D, Macy J, Torabi M, Middlestadt S. The effect of a smoke-free campus policy

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October 2011;53(4-5):347-352.

Smoke-Free Campus: Another Step Towards Higher Education. (n.d.). Retrieved

June 01, 2017, from

Wechsler, Henry. Kelley, Kathleen, Seibring, Mark. Kuo, Neichun. Rigotti,

Nancy. College Smoking Policies and Smoking Cessation Programs: Results of a Survey
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