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Others could follow after University of Regina bans smoking on campus

The days of smoking on campus for students and staff at the University of Regina are coming to an end. Global News

The days of smoking on campus for students and staff at the University of Regina are coming to an end. As of August 1st, 2018, the university is going smoke-free.

“Why does it have to be smoke-free when lots of students and staff [smoke who are here], I don’t see why they’re getting rid of it,” student Daroyln Anderson said.

READ MORE: McMaster University to ban smoking on campus on Jan. 1

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For some, it came as a bit of a surprise and it’s not just tobacco that’s being banned. Under the new policy, e-cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos marijuana and pipe tobacco will also be banned from campus and that includes vehicles.

“We certainly teach our students in a number of our faculties [including] faculty of kinesiology, health and sport, faculty of nursing- about the dangers of second-hand smoke and tobacco use. So certainly, we’re living that value,” Director of Health Safety and Wellness, Darren Cherwaty said.

It’s a decision being applauded by the Lung Association of Saskatchewan, who say young adults are the highest users of tobacco in the province.

“This absolutely supports that age group, as well, we want everybody to breath clean air especially at the university level, Vice President of community engagement with the Lung Association of Saskatchewan, Jennifer May said.

READ MORE: McGill students call for smoking ban on campus

Regina becomes the 26th campus in the country to go smoke-free, a move made by Dalhousie University in 2003.

“It seems like a good idea, personally I know it’s easier on my lungs. Maybe a little restrictive to people who are still smoking,” one student said.

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“It’s really windy [in Regina] and when you pass through the people who are smoking you feel so bad, [it’s] frustrating,” said another student.

READ MORE: Cannabis on campus: how B.C. universities plan to deal with the coming legalization of pot

Other campuses including the University of Saskatchewan, are also considering a ban.

In a statement the University of Saskatchewan said:

“All University of Saskatchewan buildings, including student residences, are smoke-free and our current smoking policy prohibits smoking within 10 meters of the perimeter of any university building. In balance with many wellness initiatives, the University is considering going smoke-free on all areas of the campus.”

While the new rules don’t apply to the First Nations University and Innovation Place, it’s a move that could become the new norm in the province.

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