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FIU bans smoking on campuses

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The Florida International University (FIU) Board of Trustees has approved a regulation that will make the university smoke and tobacco-free effective Jan. 2011. As a result, smoking and the use of tobacco products will be prohibited on all university-owned properties, including the Modesto A. Maidique campus, Biscayne Bay campus, Engineering campus, recreational facilities, residential facilities, parking lots and garages.

Tobacco use in vehicles that are on FIU-owned properties also will be prohibited. “This regulation is truly a reflection of our commitment to environment and health, Vice President for Student Affairs Rosa Jones said in a recent press statement. “The smoke and tobacco-free initiative will help us build a healthier university.

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Jones noted that enforcement of the regulation should come after a six to eight-month period of giving support to students, faculty and staff, that will incorporate smoking cessation services and resources. With the vote, FIU becomes the second public university in Florida to implement a tobacco-free initiative. The University of Florida enacted a similar policy earlier this year.

In approving the regulation, FIU joins a growing national trend. There are now at least 420 universities around the country with smoke-free campuses, including residential housing where it exists, according to the American Nonsmokers Rights Foundation.

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