As most of us know, UMass will be joining 1,100 other campuses in a smoke free environment for its students and staff. The university will be administering the smoking ban campus-wide on July 1, 2013. Upon the return to campus for the fall 2013 semester, smoking will no longer be tolerated. This includes all areas of campus as well as inside vehicles and parking lots.
Within this article, the author discuses the impacts of municipal smoking bans in public areas such as restaurants and bars. Recent studies showed that there was generally an improvement seen with the use of smoking bans in place. Smokers reduced the number of times they stepped outside for a smoke and the second hand smoke completely disappeared, improving the health of the employees and other guests.
Although smoking bans are beneficial, study shows that smoking rates are still high. A study of student smokers showed that label warnings were not necessarily helpful in preventing the decision to quit smoking. More dramatic warnings such as “smokers die earlier” versus the typical warning, “smoking causes lung cancer, heart disease, emphysema, and may complicate pregnancy” were shown to the students. Those who smoked for self-esteem reasons actually viewed smoking more positively after seeing the new warning. Those who didn’t smoke for self-esteem reasons viewed smoking more negatively.
Tell me your thoughts about smoking. Do you think that the new smoking ban at UMass will have an effect on the students and staff? Would different warning labels on cigarettes packages cause smokers to quit smoking or will they be ignored regardless of the dramatic warnings?
Kimberly Ty (3)