College Goes Tobacco Free July 1
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Michelle Tooker, Public Relations
(Delaware and Chester Counties, PA)—In a commitment to creating a healthy and sustainable environment for the entire Delaware County Community College community, the College is pleased to announce that all of its campuses and centers will go tobacco free on July 1, 2013. The policy prohibits the use of any tobacco product (cigarettes, cigars, pipes, snuff, chewing tobacco, etc.) on all college-owned or leased properties. The College is proud to join nearly 800 schools around the country that maintain 100 percent tobacco-free campuses.
“Tobacco-free policies are an effective way to improve long-term employee and student health,” says College President Jerry Parker. “According to the Center for Disease Control, worldwide, tobacco use results in nearly 5 million deaths per year. If current trends continue, it is predicted that tobacco use will cause more than 10 million deaths annually by the year 2020. Cigarette smoking remains the leading preventable cause of death in the United States and is responsible for an estimated 438,000 deaths per year, or about one out of every five deaths. Tobacco-free campuses create work and social environments in which tobacco users find it easier to reduce their consumption or quit altogether.”
The process of becoming tobacco-free began as a student-driven initiative in 2008. Since that time, the College’s student government organization has worked on and supported the policy, which the Board of Trustees approved in early 2012. Last June, a Tobacco-Free Task Force—comprised of various stakeholders—began working together to transition the College to a 100 percent tobacco-free campus. Preparations for the transition have included an increase in smoking cessation programming, offered through the College’s Wellness Center, along with the launch of a “Breathe Easy” marketing campaign aimed at communicating the new policy to the College community.
The policy is also intended to eliminate exposure to secondhand smoke, provide an environment supportive of tobacco-free lifestyles and eliminate the environmental impact of cigarette litter. The policy applies to all faculty, staff, students and visitors (including contractors and their employees). To learn more about this initiative, visit: www.dccc.edu/tobacco-free.
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