|Responsible University Administrator:||Vice President for Student Affairs and Vice Provost|
|Responsible Officer:||Director of Health Services Center|
|Current Revision Date:||NA|
|Next Review Date:||6/1/21|
|End of Policy Date:||NA|
The University of Southern Mississippi strives to enhance the general health and well-being of its faculty, staff, students and visitors. We desire to support individuals to be tobacco-free, achieve their highest state of health and to launch students into their careers at a high level of health and wellbeing. To support this commitment, we intend to provide a tobacco-free environment. Smoking and the use of tobacco are prohibited in or on all University owned, operated or leased property including vehicles.
Research findings show the use of tobacco products is one of the most significant hazards to serious health problems ranging from heart disease, stroke, and cancer in smokers and nonsmokers. This includes and is not limited to smoking, second-hand smoke or smokeless tobacco. By endorsing a tobacco-free policy, The University of Southern Mississippi joins the many colleges and universities nationwide in demonstrating its commitment to eliminating tobacco exposure, promoting healthy practices and choices for individuals. In return, this is establishing a collegiate culture of wellness. The University of Southern Mississippi will promote a culture of a healthy lifestyle by providing resources for tobacco cessation and support. By becoming tobacco-free, The University of Southern Mississippi and its constituents will further the mission of wellness and send a clear message of USM’s commitment to a healthy lifestyle.
All University of Southern Mississippi community members (faculty, staff and students), visitors, contractors and vendors.
All tobacco-derived or containing products, including and not limited to, cigarettes (e.g., clove, bidis, kreteks), electronic cigarettes, cigars and cigarillos, hookah smoked products, pipes and oral tobacco (e.g., spit and spitless, smokeless, chew, snuff) and nasal tobacco. It also includes any product intended to mimic tobacco products, contain tobacco flavoring or deliver nicotine other than for the purpose of cessation.
Means inhaling, exhaling, burning, carrying or possessing any lighted tobacco product, including cigarettes, cigars, pipe tobacco, e-cigarettes, and any other lit tobacco products or similar products that are intended to mimic tobacco smoking and create vapors for inhalation.
1.0 The University of Southern Mississippi does not permit smoking or the use of any tobacco product on any property, or at any campus locations of the University, subject to the exceptions noted herein. This includes “tobacco” and/or “smoking” as defined herein.
2.0 The University is strongly committed to supporting individuals to become tobacco free.
2.1 Tobacco cessation information, programs and support will be available to faculty, staff and students.
2.2 Smokeless and vaporless nicotine replacement therapy products for the purpose of cessation are permitted.
3.0 The success of this policy depends upon the thoughtfulness, consideration and cooperation of tobacco and non-tobacco users. The responsibility for the enforcement and communication of this policy ultimately rests with all members of the University community.
3.1 Concerns about tobacco use should be respectfully addressed in the moment whenever feasible. Faculty, staff, students, volunteers, contractors and visitors who observe individuals using tobacco on University property are encouraged and empowered to respectfully explain that its use is prohibited by the University’s Tobacco-Free Policy and that information is available through the Moffitt Health Center about smoking cessation programs.
3.2 Continued concerns should be referred to the appropriate department for review and action. For faculty, staff and student employees, issues should be referred to the immediate supervisor. For continuing concerns with students in the non-employment setting, issues should be referred to the Dean of Students.
3.3 Visitors, contractors, vendors, and other individuals on campus who are in violation of this policy will be reminded of the policy and asked to comply with the University’s Tobacco-Free Policy. Continuing issues should be referred to the hosting department head.
4.0 The University will not permit the advertising of any tobacco product on University owned, operated or leased property, at any University-sponsored event or in any University owned or sponsored media.
5.0 The sale of any tobacco product is prohibited on University owned, operated or leased property.
6.0 Organizers and attendees at public events, such as conferences, meetings, public lectures, social events, cultural events, and athletic events using University-owned facilities, grounds, and properties are required to abide by this University policy. Organizers of such events are responsible for communicating to attendees the policies of the University and for enforcing this policy.
7.1 Research involving tobacco or tobacco products is an exception from this policy. Acceptance of tobacco-funded research grants will be evaluated by the Vice President for Research and the appropriate dean/administrator prior to acceptance of the funds.
7.2 Smoking or the use of tobacco products may be permitted for educational, theatrical, or religious ceremonial purposes, in a specific University facility with prior written approval of the Dean, Director, or Department Head responsible for the University facility.
7.3 Gulf Coast Research Laboratory (GCRL) Vessel Operations during offshore work:
7.3.1 Smoking or the use of any tobacco product is not permitted inside any University vessel. Crewmembers/passengers are only allowed to smoke or use tobacco products on the outside, open decks of the vessels so as not to interfere with the operation of the vessel or with any other crewmember or passenger.
7.3.2 Crewmembers and passengers are not permitted to smoke or use any tobacco product on any educational trip with persons under the age of eighteen (18) onboard any University vessel.
8.0 Persons will be notified of this policy through signs posted in appropriate areas throughout the University; various University websites including Human Resources, Athletics, Student Affairs, Office of the Provost, Moffitt Health Center; and regular communications to all employees and students. Contractors and vendors will be notified of the Tobacco-Free Policy as appropriate.
9.0 The success of this policy depends on the thoughtfulness, consideration, and cooperation of smokers and non-smokers. All members of the University community share in the responsibility for adhering to and supporting this policy.
The Director of the Health Services Center is responsible for the review of this policy every four years or as needed.
Amendments: Month, Day, Year – summary of changes
11/01/11: Formatted for Institutional Policies website.
01/17/12: Enforcement of policy begins.
02/21/13: Formatted for template. Minor editing throughout.
7/1/2017: Policy created effective January 1, 2018 to replace the prior smoking policy.