Victoria University to go smokefree?

CARLA PENMAN
Last updated 09:17 23/08/2012
Smoking
Fairfax NZ
BAN PLAN: Victoria University is looking to impose a smokefree policy across all four campuses.

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The Wellingtonian

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Plans to make Victoria University campuses smokefree have been met with opposition.

The university is looking to impose a smokefree policy across all four campuses, following similar bans at Auckland University of Technology and Canterbury University.

Marketing student Lauren Watling said although she was not a smoker, people should be allowed to have a cigarette between classes if they wanted.

"Having Vic Uni smokefree seems like a waste of time and energy," she said.

Third-year arts student Daria Romanos said the policy would only further discriminate those who smoke.

"There is already an area opposite Vic books at the Kelburn campus, where smokers generally congregate," she said.

"I don't see why they don't just make that one area available to smokers."

If the university campus was to become smokefree, an area should be set aside for smokers, he said.

Victoria University chancellor Ian McKinnon said a smoking ban would provide a healthier workplace.

"Smoking has a negative impact on the environment generally, therefore an adverse impact on the other people on campus who don't actually smoke," he said.

Mr McKinnon said it was up to any organisation or institution to decide to what extent smoking should be regulated.

Smoking indoors or within three metres of a building is already prohibited.

Campus Services staff have compiled maps outlining the proposed smokefree areas.

The maps indicate Kelburn Parade and Cobblestone Park, outside the Te Aro campus, as areas smokers would be able to use.

Campus Operations associate director Rainsforth Dix said if the proposed change was to go ahead, the first port- of-call would be educating people about the new rules.

"Support is currently and will continue to be provided to students or staff wishing to quit smoking - either through the University's Student Health service or via organisations such as Quitline," she said.

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- The Wellingtonian

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