AMHERST, N.Y. – As a major initiative in fostering a healthy college environment, Daemen College has implemented a new tobacco-free policy, effective Sept. 6, 2016.
In doing so, Daemen joins more than 1,100 colleges and universities across the U.S. that have made a strong commitment to promoting the health and well-being of their college community by creating a 100 percent tobacco-free campus.
“In light of the many health risks associated with tobacco use, creating a campus environment that’s clean and free from tobacco products is key to the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, and visitors,” said Daemen President Gary A. Olson. “The courtesy and cooperation of everyone on campus will contribute to making this a successful transition, and we will provide the collegial support needed to members of the Daemen community who may find this change to be challenging.”
Under the policy, tobacco use is prohibited in all Daemen buildings, facilities, and grounds on the college’s Main Street campus and other college properties, including the Academic and Wellness Center, and Daemen House, the presidential residence, as well as in college vehicles.
The policy covers all types of tobacco and tobacco products, including e-cigarettes. Daemen will provide assistance and smoking cessation resources and information to those who wish to quit smoking or end tobacco usage.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, tobacco use is the single most preventable cause of disease, disability, and death in the country. Additionally, the Tobacco-Free College Campus Initiative cites a 2012 Surgeon General’s Report that shows that 99 percent of smokers begin smoking and using other forms of tobacco by age 26, “making college and university campuses a critical target for tobacco use prevention and cessation efforts.”
The decision to implement Daemen’s new tobacco-free policy follows extensive research, feedback, and discussions by the college’s Tobacco-Free Task Force, which was co-chaired by Dr. Greg Nayor, vice president for student affairs, and Kelly Pogore, associate director of human resources.
“Daemen has long been a smoke-free campus but an overwhelming majority of students, faculty, and staff were supportive of the college taking the next step in becoming fully tobacco-free,” said Dr. Greg Nayor, vice president for student affairs. “We are strongly committed to this campus-wide wellness initiative, which will help create a healthier learning and work environment for the entire college community.”