Smoking snubbed at North Haven, staying at Mount Carmel, York Hill

Julia Perkins

Although the university banned smoking cigarettes on the North Haven Campus last summer, there are no plans to implement a similar rule on the Mount Carmel and York Hill campuses, according to Associate Vice President for Public Relations John Morgan.

[media-credit name=”Design by Sam Epstein” align=”alignright” width=”300″][/media-credit]On the Mount Carmel and York Hill campuses, smoking is permitted outdoors, but not inside the buildings and residence halls, Chief of Public Safety David Barger said.

In 2003, Connecticut’s Clean Indoor Air Act outlawed smoking in the workplace, restaurants, food stores, state buildings and the dorm rooms of public and private universities.

Smoking in the residence halls is also a violation of the student housing contract, Barger said.

Since smoking is detrimental to one’s health and the North Haven focuses on the Health Sciences, the university banned smoking on the North Haven campus last summer.

“They wanted to have that whole aura of being a healthy environment,” Barger said. “How do you have a healthy environment with someone smoking with all that we know?”

Barger said that since North Haven is relatively new and not a residential campus, implementing this rule was fairly easy.

“It hasn’t come with a great deal of enforcement,” he said. “Everyone has seemed to comply down there with the no smoking.”

On the Mount Carmel Campus, however, some students are bothered by the amount of smoking.

“It is annoying when you see people smoking when you are trying to get to class and see people outside Tator [Hall] blowing smoke in your face,” junior Cynthia Francois said.

According to Barger, students have never pushed for the Mount Carmel and York Hill campuses to become tobacco-free.

“I don’t think [banning smoking] has ever been brought up,” he said. “If there were a movement of some type, perhaps it would be looked at with a little bit more discerning eye.”

Freshman Christian Spader believes that students have the right to smoke cigarettes on campus.

“We are all adults and if you have an addiction what are you supposed to do, leave campus?” he said.

On the other hand, sophomore Maylin Salazar said that she would support a smoking ban on campus.

“If it is for the public health it is good,” she said. “[Smoking] is gross and it makes you smell.”

The Connecticut legislature’s Transportation Committee discussed banning smoking cigarettes in cars with passengers under seven on Feb. 20, according to the Hartford Courant. The law aims to decrease the amount of secondhand smoke children are exposed to.

Since few students drive with young passengers, Barger said that this proposed law would have a minimal effect on the campus. However, Public Safety would still enforce this law.

“If we saw it then we would have to stop them and we would have to contact Hamden Police
Department,” he said.

Even though Quinnipiac is a private university, it still must follow Connecticut law. This means that if Connecticut ever passed a law prohibiting smoking in open areas, the university would have to abide by it.

“We are bound by laws of the state of Connecticut,” Barger said. “We would have to establish one smoking area on campus, or perhaps a smoking room … We are not special.”