Tobacco fight goes to Marshall

Student government representatives at Marshall University are hoping to make the campus tobacco free by the plan, which will be based on independence.

The Student Government Association’s Senate has approved a resolution to ban the use or sale of tobacco products on campus. While this measure will not impose penalties, SGA President Ray Harrell Jr. believes that it will still be effective.

“If you impose this policy, in the end people will start to accept it and just do not smoke because they know it’s a rule,” said Harrell.

Many other colleges campuses have banned tobacco and rely on themselves to force method, he said.

In June, the Board of Governors at West Virginia University approved a similar campus tobacco ban. Although the policy threatens nothing to the exclusion of students or job loss for employees, university spokesman said at the time she did not think it would happen.

WVU President Jim Clements will designate the people in charge of enforcement, according to the school’s policy.

A ban, enacted in 2004, at the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine has been very effective, a university representative told the Daily Mail in June. On Nov. 15, a similar ban takes effect at West Virginia Northern Community College, according to the Associated Press

The Marshall Board of Governors must approve the policy, and Harrell also wants the faculty senate to look it over, he said. Although the resolution met some opposition (it passed 11-7), he said a grassroots student movement has pushed for a tobacco-free campus for years.

“Most of the students brought this for years, and I wanted to be like all Decisions County considers it necessary,” said Harrell.

In the last six or seven years, Marshall of the students, faculty and staff about, among other things, the use of tobacco on campus, said Harrell. Consistently, there was a majority in favor of restricting its use in the past year, said Harrell 71 percent of those surveyed supported the ban.

Student government tried to solve the problem last year, but could not agree on a resolution. Harrell said during the summer, Marshall President Stephen Kopp asked him to form a committee to discuss tobacco on campus and whether it should be limited.

Harrell and consists of representatives of the Office Kopp, students, student housing and student health, regulate tobacco Committee discussed this issue and presented a resolution in the Senate. “In order to ensure a safe and healthy environment” for everyone on campus, the resolution bans all tobacco products and advertising or sales of these products.

The policy violates the rights of smokers, Senator Ross Gardiner said. Although he said that he can not stand without a smoke, a sophomore from Maryland does not think it is appropriate for the student government to introduce the faith on others.

“For me it’s just inverted morality,” he said. “I have no right to vote on the rights of other nations.”

Others have raised the idea of establishing smoking areas on campus or allow only smokeless tobacco products. No one moved to include these parameters in the resolution, he said.

Both Harrell and Gardiner said that they saw people smoking on campus. Harrell said that there are some areas, usually near the entrance to the main building or in the open air with general practice, where smokers tend to be seen. Gardiner thought that the vast majority of students do not use tobacco products, however.

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