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Archive for Monday, January 18, 2010

Kansas Regents considering banning tobacco sales on campuses

January 18, 2010

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State leaders considering KU cigarette ban

State leaders are considering banning the sale of tobacco products on the Kansas University campus. Kansas and K-State are currently the only Board of Regents institutions that allow tobacco sales on campus. Enlarge video

On the street

Should cigarette sales be banned on campus?

I believe they should. I’m at the speech pathology clinic (for my major) and we have kids coming in and older adults that have health issues.

More responses

— Stopping between classes to pick up a pack of cigarettes at the Kansas University student union could become a thing of the past.

The Kansas Board of Regents is considering whether to enact a policy to ban the sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products on university campuses.

The board will discuss the issue during its monthly meeting on Thursday. Although there is no official regents policy on cigarette sales, according to a regents memo, only KU and Kansas State University allow the sale of cigarettes on campus.

Board Chair Jill Docking said she couldn’t predict the outcome of the discussion.

“The argument for a ban would be our interest in preventing young people from smoking as we know all of the ramifications for future health problems,” Docking said.

She said the argument against a ban is that “people who smoke are going to continue to smoke and we cannot legislate good health habits.”

The issue has arisen in light of a bill before the Kansas Legislature to prohibit smoking statewide in public, indoor places.

Former state Sen. David Wysong, a proponent of the public smoking ban, asked the board in October to put its political weight behind his bill, which has also been pushed by Gov. Mark Parkinson.

The board said it would consider whether to join the push for a smoking ban, but also raised questions on the status of state university smoking and tobacco sales policies.

All six state universities prohibit smoking in university buildings, residence halls, student unions, centers and university vehicles. But there is no regents policy regarding the sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products.

Kansas University and Kansas State University don’t allow use of their trademarks on tobacco products or to promote them, according to a regents staff memo. KU does allow the sale of cigarettes at the Kansas and Burge Unions, the memo states.

An employee at the Kansas Union Hawk Shop said cigarettes were a popular item at the store. The store also sells chewing tobacco.

KU Medical Center doesn’t allow the sale of tobacco products on campus.

The regents staff recommends that the board direct the State University Council of Presidents to make a recommendation to the board on whether to have a policy to ban the on-campus sale of tobacco products. Such a recommendation could be made in March. According to the regents staff, no tobacco products are sold at Wichita State, Emporia State, Fort Hays State or Pittsburg State universities.

Comments

KU_cynic 4 years, 11 months ago

Couldn't the KU Chancellor and Provost enact a ban on tobacco sales without consulting the regents?

Why don't KU leaders just step up and do it -- out of concern for student well being and public health -- without hiding behind the Regents' skirts?

Kdavis04 4 years, 11 months ago

If KU is seeking National Cancer Institute (NCI) designation, one would think a ban on campuswide smoking and sales of tobacco products to students would be construed as "walking the talk" on cancer prevention. As a non-smoking lung cancer survivor and KU faculty member I would encourage prompt action by KU leadership to enact such policies.

Melissa Sigler 4 years, 11 months ago

People who smoke are going to continue smoking, so I don't know how much good it would actually do. Its a nice idea, sure, but will it actually deter people from lighting up for good? Doubtful.

MrMEtoo 4 years, 11 months ago

KU students are adults that can be expected to take care of their bodies and lives in a manner that they choose, as adults. Cigarettes are not a problem on campus. Their litter effect is far less than the student newspapers left all over campus. Smokers already are asked to keep outside and away from doorways. As a student, I feel no issue with the occasional, if not rare, whiff of smoke I catch from an outdoor smoker.

I think that we should quit oppressing adult smokers and let the students make their own decisions and accept the consequences that come with them, such as effects of smoking.

Cigarettes clearly are popular and making money for the union. Why quit making money?

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