Smoking and Tobacco Free Policy

Recommended By
Ad Hoc Smoking Policy Committee
Ruben Armiñana, President
Issue Date
Monday, August 19, 1991
Current Issue Date
Friday, January 30, 2015
Effective Date
Sunday, February 1, 2015
Contact Office
Office of Employee Relations & Compliance Services
Policy number


Sonoma State University has a responsibility to its employees, students, and visitors to provide a safe and healthful environment.  Research shows that smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke are significant health hazards for both smokers and non-smokers.  Improperly discarded cigarette butts and other smoking and tobacco product residue are environmental pollutants that pose dangers to humans and wildlife.  In addition to these hazards, smoking and discarded cigarettes may create fire hazards and increased cleaning, maintenance, and repair costs; exacerbate student and employee illness resulting in lost class and work time; decreased productivity; and increased healthcare and insurance costs. To address these interests and concerns, and under authority conferred by the California Legislature and the California State University Board of Trustees, the Sonoma State University Smoking Policy is being issued.

  1. Definition
    For the purposes of this policy “smoking” means lighting, burning, carrying, inhaling, exhaling, or holding a lit cigarette, cigar, bidi, pipe, or other smoking or recreational vapor delivery apparatus containing tobacco or another substance. Substances and activities prohibited by this policy include use of other tobacco products such as smokeless tobacco, as well as the use of e-cigarettes and similar devices.  Not prohibited by this policy are nicotine gum or patches or other medically prescribed smoking cessation assistance devices.
  2. Policy
    It is the policy of Sonoma State University that smoking and other uses of tobacco products are prohibited on campus as well as at off campus sites under University ownership or control, and in vehicles owned, leased, or rented by the University.
    1. Implementation, Compliance, and Enforcement:
      1. The transition from the current campus policy regarding tobacco use to a smoke and tobacco free campus will be achieved in two steps.
        1. Effective February 1, 2015 and continuing through June 30, 2015, smoking and use of tobacco, as defined above, will be strictly limited to parking lots. Lit tobacco or other smoking products must be extinguished and butts or other residue must be properly disposed of prior to leaving these areas.  Such items must never be discarded on the ground or pavement.
        2. Effective July 1, 2015, smoking and use of tobacco, as defined above, will be prohibited throughout the campus as well as at off campus sites under University ownership or control, and in vehicles owned, leased, or rented by the University.
      2. The advertising, sale, or promotional distribution of tobacco or other smoking products on campus is prohibited.
      3. This policy and the restrictions within it will be widely publicized to students, employees, visitors, contractors, and vendors.  Information about the effects of smoking and secondhand smoke, as well as the availability of on-line, telephone or other smoking cessation/QUIT assistance programs, will be made available through regular University announcements to employees and students and on the Student Health Center and Environmental Health and Safety websites.
      4. The success of this policy depends on the thoughtfulness, civility and cooperation of all members of the campus community, including visitors. Compliance is grounded in an informed and educated campus community. As with all campus policies, it is a standard and reasonable duty of all SSU employees, volunteers, auxiliaries, and students to fully comply with the provisions of this policy. Incidents related to this policy will be addressed through applicable administrative processes. Violators of this policy should expect to be approached and reminded of their obligation to comply with this policy. Questions may be directed to Employee Relations & Compliance Services.

Updated January 30, 2015 by