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Ohio State aims to become tobacco-free in 2013

Lantern file photo

Ohio State aims to become a tobacco-free campus by August.

In a Friday email announcement to students, faculty and staff, OSU President E. Gordon Gee said the university began exploring the idea Fall Semester after “the idea was raised by many in our university community.”

Gee said in his email the university met with groups that represent the OSU community and surrounding neighborhoods, and received mostly supportive feedback on the idea of a tobacco-free campus.

The goal is to implement a tobacco-free policy by Aug. 1, 2013 and Gee said OSU will begin gathering feedback on the proposal Friday.

Gee also said the university will appoint a “broadly represented committee” to decide how the plan will be implemented. A resolution for the tobacco-free proposal is expected to be sent to the OSU Board of Trustees in April.

The Board is scheduled to meet on April 4 and 5 and must approve the revision of the current smoke-free policy, according to Gee’s email.

The Ohio Board of Regents passed a resolution to ban tobacco use on public college campuses in July, however the Board of Regents holds no authority over the ruling guidelines of individual colleges, and recommended the Board of Trustees at each institution adopt a tobacco-free campus policy.

OSU’s Wexner Medical Center has been tobacco free since 2006, and OSU has been smoke free since 1987.

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