BCTC has a responsibility to its students, faculty, and staff to provide a safe and healthy work and learn environment. Research shows that tobacco use in general, in addition to the effects of secondhand smoke, constitutes a health hazard. Tobacco use contributes to college costs in several ways, including those associated with absenteeism, health care, medical insurance and cleaning and maintenance.
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The policy applies to anyone who is on the Bluegrass Community & Technical College campuses, including faculty and staff members, students, contractors, vendors, volunteers and visitors. It applies to all tobacco and smoking products (including smokeless tobacco and e-cigarettes).
The use of tobacco is prohibited throughout all BCTC campuses including buildings, grounds, and parking areas. It also applies to college vehicles and other college property.
The following tobacco cessation resources and programs are available for employees and students:
This policy does not remove any person’s right to use tobacco, but it does prohibit such behaviors on college property. The policy is built on a foundation of respect for both tobacco users and those who do not use tobacco, engendering an environment of mutual respect and a healthy lifestyle.
Tobacco use has a strong social component. Research indicates that designated areas would actually promote more tobacco use on campus. Shelters would also be expensive, and threats associated with secondhand smoke would remain.
The previous policy allowed designated areas and did not address public health concerns. That policy, which prohibited smoking within 20 feet of buildings and allowed smoking in designated areas, was not working and many members of the BCTC community asked that the policy be reviewed.
Posters, yard signs, banners, information on the college website, emails from the college president, information disseminated in student orientation sessions are examples of methods used to communicate the new policy. Notices have been included in new employee materials and will be included in new materials distributed to outside groups using college facilities.
As with other college policies, compliance is an expectation for all employees, students and visitors. Initial enforcement will involve education, awareness, intervention and referral for smoking cessation support. Progressive disciplinary procedures will then be used as necessary and appropriate for violations. Employees may contact their supervisor or the Human Resources Department for assistance regarding specific enforcement concerns. Students may contact the Assistant Vice President of Student Rights and Responsibilities.
Faculty, staff, and students who see individuals using tobacco products on college property should respectfully inform these individuals of the policy prohibiting tobacco use anywhere on college grounds. Individuals who do not feel comfortable approaching someone violating the policy can notify the Human Resources Department or the Assistant Vice President of Student Rights and Responsibilities.
We recommend managers/supervisors remind employees of this policy and seek their cooperation with compliance. Supervisors are encouraged to communicate the college’s smoking cessation assistance opportunities to employees and consult with Human Resources prior to implementing disciplinary action.
A face-to-face meeting with the employee to discuss concerns is always the best place to start. The following tips can help:
No. Non-exempt employees will continue to get the same breaks and meal periods currently in effect.