Smoking continues on campus despite Tobacco Ban

April weather means warmer temperatures and a greener campus, which makes the walk to class a little more tolerable. However, it is impossible to focus on Marshall University’s “tobacco free campus” through a cloud of smoke. Despite the “no smoking signs” placed on campus buildings, people continue to use tobacco and e-cigarettes throughout campus

A Tobacco Ban was placed on Marshall’s campus July 1, 2013 and is imposed on all students, faculty, staff and visitors. But the ban can be lifted for events that take place on campus that attract large crowds. E-cigarettes were also banned. This is the only information, however, on the ban that can be found. Marshall’s website does not list any guidelines or consequences for those who are caught smoking on campus.

After three years, one would think the days of cigarette butts littering sidewalks and flower beds were over, but the smoking presence continues to linger.

A past student said in a 2014 MU Report story students on campus were at the age where they can make the decision to smoke or not.

“It’s not going to work. People are still going to smoke. We’re adults. We can make this decision by ourselves and you telling us that we can’t do it aren’t going to change the fact that we are.”

The people who attend and work for Marshall are of the age where they can make the decision to smoke or not, but should show the respect for those who wish to not smoke by refraining from smoking while walking through campus or the high traffic areas.

There should be dedicated areas for those who choose to smoke. Those students who do obey the Tobacco Ban instead of not smoking at all, line the perimeter of the school instead of not smoking on campus at all. Students congregate outside dorms to smoke, making it difficult for others to avoid the smoke. For those who want  to smoke and continue to do so, there is no known punishment or information listed in order to inform students and faculty of the ban.

Communication between Marshall administration,  students and faculty would provide a better foundation to enforce the ban. If people do not know how far away from campus they can smoke and what are the consequences are of disobeying the guidelines. Better enforcement would also prevent students and faculty from disobeying the ban.