October 20, 2017  

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Southern Miss Transitioning to Tobacco-Free on All Campuses

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The University of Southern Mississippi is transitioning to tobacco-free for all campuses, teaching and research sites, effective Jan. 1, 2018. A copy of the new tobacco-free policy can be accessed at: https://www.usm.edu/institutional-policies/policy-stua-hs-001. This policy will replace the former smoking policy, which limited smoking to certain designated areas. 

A Tobacco Free Campus Taskforce has been created through the Moffitt Health Center with members from the Hattiesburg and Gulf Park campuses to assist with policy promotion, awareness and implementation. Current members include representatives from the Office of Health Promotion, Faculty Senate, Staff Council, Student Government Association, Student Affairs, Recreational Sports, Athletics, Physical Plant, Department of Public Health, and the University Police Department. Efforts will also include the promotion of cessation resources available to those desiring to quit using tobacco.

Research demonstrates that the use of tobacco products is one of the most significant factors in developing serious health problems ranging from heart disease, stroke, and cancer in smokers and nonsmokers. This includes, but is not limited to, smoking, second-hand smoke or smokeless tobacco. USM joins the many colleges and universities nationwide in demonstrating its commitment to eliminating tobacco exposure and promoting healthy practices and choices for individuals.

Funding from a grant by the CVS Health Foundation will be used to support implementation efforts and to train members of the University community to actively assist in tobacco cessation efforts. The grant is part of the American Cancer Society (ACS)’s Tobacco-Free Generation Campus Initiative. The ACS will provide technical assistance and other resources, including education, communications, support to quit smoking, and evaluation.

For more information, contact the Moffitt Health Center at 601.266.5390.