ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – Students and faculty at Flagler College who want to light up or vape will need to head off campus to do it, starting Aug. 1.
Those who want to avoid second-hand smoke can breathe a little easier around Flagler College thanks to a new 100 percent smoke-free policy the college adopted recently.
The policy prohibits the use of all smoking products, including cigarettes, loose-leaf tobacco, chewing tobacco, and simulated smoking products, such as Juuls, e-cigarettes and vapes.
College officials said the rise in popularity of products like vapes, e-cigarettes, and Juuls, which are encouraged by college party culture and social media, prompted the policy change, which also includes the launch of the Breathe Free Flagler College campaign this fall.
The campaign, which was created by strategic communication major students at the college, will run for two years as an effort to create awareness, acceptance, and positive attitudes toward a smoke- and tobacco-free campus, while reducing the prevalence of tobacco use and exposure to environmental tobacco smoke.
Officials said the smoke-free policy will allow the college to better protect the health of its students, faculty, staff, visitors, and community members, and better achieve its mission as an organization.
“Smoking and the use of tobacco products have long been linked to health problems," said Dr. Eric Hoffman, project director for the "Breathe Free" campaign. "I am very pleased that Flagler College has passed this new smoke- and tobacco-free policy, and I’m happy to be a part of the Breathe-Free campaign. With the generosity of our supporters and community partners, I am confident that our initiative will be successful and benefit all at Flagler College and the St. Augustine community.”
Tobacco Free St. Johns has sponsored the "Breathe Free" Flagler College campaign and will help the college to inform and to educate students, faculty, staff, and the surrounding community about the benefits of going smoke-free.
To help students, faculty, and staff with this transition, Flagler College will be providing cessation and Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) to help those addicted to nicotine cope with cravings.