News

PSU starts fall term smoke and tobacco free
Author: University Communications
Posted: September 30, 2015

Portland State University has joined hundreds of colleges across the country and more than 20 in Oregon in banning smoking, vaping and the use of tobacco products everywhere on campus. 

As students, faculty and staff start fall term this week, they will see signs all over campus saying that PSU is now completely smoke and tobacco free. The ban includes the use and sale of smokeless tobacco, chew, snuff, cigars, cigarettes, e-cigarettes, pipes, hookahs, and other products.

The new policy, which took effect Sept. 15, fulfills President Wim Wiewel’s pledge in the 2013 Fresh Air Challenge to have a smoke free campus by 2016.

“This is a common-sense way to improve the air quality for everyone at PSU,” Wiewel said. “Our goal is a cleaner and more enjoyable campus.”

Members of PSU’s Healthy Campus Initiative have been working since 2009 to draft the new policy, gauge campus support and work with outside partners such as the City of Portland and Portland Parks and Recreation. A 2012 survey showed 62 percent of faculty, 64 percent of staff and 57 percent of students supported a smoke free campus. In 2014, Portland Parks and Recreation expanded its smoke and tobacco free parks policy to include the South Park Blocks on the PSU campus.

“Creating a smoke and tobacco free campus is part of PSU's commitment to fostering a healthier environment for our student, faculty, staff, and visitors,” said Dr. Dana Tasson, executive director of the Center for Student Health and Counseling.

The new policy does not provide areas for people to smoke or use tobacco products on campus property. The university is making strong efforts to urge all those who use smoke or tobacco products to be respectful of PSU’s neighbors and comply with state law by not smoking within 10 feet of a door, window or air intake.

The full policy, a campus map, frequently asked questions and smoking cessation resources are on the PSU website.