By Victoria Healy and Justin Spinks – Collegian Staff
Tighter smoking polices could be in store for all GPC campuses after a Newton campus student filed a complaint to the SGA. Luke Schlief filed a formal letter of complaint which sought a smoking ban on all campuses. The letter prompted the SGA to debate over tighter regulations on-campus and designated smoking areas.
GPC currently allows smoking outside in designated areas. Many students complain that these rules are not enforced and that people smoke anywhere on campus. This may pose a problem for GPC in the future with recent lawsuits against companies that allow smoking in outdoor common areas.
“They can try to ban it, but students are going to slip around the ban,” said Special Education major Pam Wheeler. “They wont be able to stop it completely.”
There are many employers, schools, and public companies that are putting smoking bans in place. Gwinnett Medical Center no longer offers employment to anyone who is a tobacco user. Other local Atlanta hospitals are following the same trend.
“I don’t think it should be banned from campuses,” stated a newton campus student who wished to remain anonymous. “Just as long as smokers stay in designated areas or in the parking lot.”
The New York Times reports the “residue includes heavy metals, carcinogens and even radioactive materials.” These particles pose a health risk to anyone who inhales them. The research shows that simply being away from the smoke is not going to protect health.
A California state appellate court recently reinstated a lawsuit against the owners of an apartment complex for allowing smoking in outdoor areas.
The court concluded that a child living in one of the apartments “has standing to bring a private nuisance claim based on interference with her right to enjoy the rented premises.”
SGA’s Smoking Committee will meet on Feb. 18 to further discuss potential regulations; The committee’s primary objective will be developing regulations to restrict students from smoking near building doors and to enforce designated smoking areas. As of press time, the organization
are not considering proposals to ban smoking on campus.