University Senate                                                           

Proposed: April 5, 2013



WHEREAS, on December 3, 2010, the University Senate adopted a revised resolution to approve a new smoking policy for Columbia University’s Morningside Campus; and

WHEREAS, that policy directed that the Senate External Relations Committee review the policy within two years; and

WHEREAS, effectiveness of this policy on the Morningside and Lamont Campuses was evaluated in summer 2012 by members of the External Relations and Research Policy Committee’s Smoking Policy Task Force; and

WHEREAS, the report’s findings indicate that the current policy has been ineffective; and

WHEREAS, in light of this report the Smoking Policy Task Force has considered appropriate modifications of the policy; and

WHEREAS, the Smoking Policy Task Force held a town hall meeting on smoking policy on January 24, 2013; and

WHEREAS, the Smoking Policy Task Force has recommended a Smoking Reduction and Control Policy for Columbia University; and

WHEREAS, the Senate External Relations Committee, having satisfied itself that the work of the Smoking Policy Task Force is sound, has forwarded it to the Senate for action;


•           It is the policy of the Senate to encourage smoking cessation programs that are available to students, staff, and faculty, and that are easily accessible to all members of the University community.

•           For the Morningside Campus, smoking shall be permitted only in the designated locations indicated in the map that is attached hereto and made part hereof.  This provision shall take effect on July 1, 2014.

•           This policy does not apply to the Lamont Campus, which is developing a policy, or the Columbia University Medical Center, which has its own policy.

•           The Senate strongly urges the administration to establish an implementation task force for this Smoking Reduction and Control Policy, and recommends that this task force include inter alia students, faculty, staff, smokers, representatives of organized labor, and persons having expertise in public health. 

•           The responsibility of the implementation task force should be to oversee the physical and cultural changes in the Morningside community, including the placement of appropriate signs, that will ensure smooth compliance with the provisions of the Smoking Reduction and Control Policy by July 1, 2014, and before July 1, 2014, to study the availability of smoking cessation programs and make appropriate recommendations.

•           If an implementation task force broadly consistent with sections 4 and 5 of this resolution is established, it may, before July 1, 2014, add designated smoking areas to the map incorporated in this resolution by section 2, and may also remove them.  Either action shall require a majority vote of the whole membership of the implementation task force.

•           On or after July 1, 2014, the President of the University shall have the power to add, modify, or remove designated smoking areas in keeping with the goals of this resolution.  If designated smoking areas are added, they should avoid air intake vents, windows, and areas where children typically are found.  The President of the University should also consider campus esthetics.  The President of the University may delegate the responsibilities and authority under this section. 

•           “Smoking” for purposes of this Smoking Reduction and Control Policy shall mean use of tobacco.  “Tobacco” shall be as defined in section 1a of the American College Health Association Position Statement on Tobacco in the most recent revision.  Currently, in that statement, “Tobacco is defined as all tobacco-derived or –containing products, including, but not limited, to cigarettes (clove, bidis, kreteks), electronic cigarettes, cigars and cigarillos, hookah-smoked products, and oral tobacco (spit and spitless, smokeless, chew, snuff).” It is the intent of this provision that the definition of smoking shall be updated as the American College Health Association Position Statement is updated. 

•           This policy shall apply to all future campus areas of the University, including Manhattanville, except as provided in section 3 hereof.

Senate  Task Force on Smoking Policy