Westwood News
Tobacco Ban On UCLA Campus
By Ivetta Babadjanian
Oct 31, 2012 - 4:54:35 PM

WESTWOOD—In response to UC President Mark Yudof's request, Chancellor Gene Block announced on Tuesday, October 30 that all UC campuses will be tobacco-free by 2014.
Chancellor Gene Block

The policy was recommended by UCLA's Tobacco-Free Steering Committee to the chancellor, and a plan will be created based on the response from the Bruins community. UCLA is the first UC to announce when the policy will be enforced which begins on April 22, 2013. It is reported that over 800 colleges and universities across the nation have adopted the tobacco-free policy. UCLA's health sciences campus and hospitals have insinuated the policy in November which has been assessed with good results.

"Tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke remain the leading causes of preventable disease and death worldwide," Block wrote in an Oct. 30 letter to campus. "A draft of the tobacco-free policy will be available for review by students, faculty and staff beginning Nov. 15. We also plan to ensure that tobacco users in our community have access to a variety of free and low-cost support services, in addition to those provided by health insurance, to help them."

A survey conducted in 2010 on eight UC campuses concluded that eight percent of undergraduates over 18 had used tobacco products during the previous month. According to a report by the California Department of Public Health, 12 percent of California adults use tobacco products.

UCLA has been working with the Los Angeles County Department of Health in order to provide students with free two-week starter kits of nicotine patches for those smokers who are interested in quitting or want an alternative to smoking during the day.

"Becoming tobacco-free," Block wrote, "is integral to our ultimate goal of becoming the healthiest college campus in the country."

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