Those who smoke endanger not only themselves but also others who do not smoke, through passive smoking. Passive smoking – breathing in other people’s tobacco smoke – has been shown to cause lung cancer and heart disease in non-smokers, as well as many other illnesses and minor conditions. Inhaling other people’s tobacco smoke is both a health hazard and a welfare issue. In addition, smoking can constitute a fire risk.
Wolfson College has adopted the following policy concerning smoking within the College and its grounds. This policy sets out how we intend to manage smoking within our environment.
Areas where smoking is allowed
Designated external smoking areas are provided as follows:
The smoking shelter at the back of R/S blocks
The graveled area at the rear of Fuchs House (where the benches are located, not against the wall of the house)
The graveled area by the railings between Front Court and the Sundial Garden, to the right of the Jack King Building (this ‘smoking area’ is not to be used by employees and workers)
In many organisations and businesses, those who smoke do so just outside the entrances and exits to the premises. We believe that this does not present a professional image. Employees and workers are therefore not permitted to smoke in the following areas: in front of the main entrance, around the back gate on Selwyn Gardens or at the designated smoking area located on the graveled area by the railings between Front Court and the Sundial Garden, to the right of the Jack King Building.
Those who need to smoke may do so within the designated areas. Employees are only permitted to smoke during any recognised rest period or lunch break. Employees who smoke will not be allowed longer or more frequent breaks than their non-smoking colleagues and use of the smoking areas is not to interfere with normal job performance.
Smoking areas will be kept clean and those using these areas are expected to keep them tidy and to dispose of any rubbish appropriately. Receptacles are provided for the disposal of cigarette ends and other waste smoking materials. There are two litter/ash bins located at the entrances to College on the main driveway and just inside Selwyn Gardens gate and one located between the rear of the Gym and W Block. These bins are for smokers to stub out their cigarettes on their way into College.
The locations of these particular bins are not to be considered as designated smoking areas. There are litter/ash bins located at the three ‘Areas where smoking is allowed’, as detailed above. Cigarettes, cigars and pipes must be extinguished using the receptacles provided and smokers should ensure that there is no risk of fire. These areas will be monitored to ensure an acceptable standard of cleanliness and adherence to safety.
Electronic cigarettes (‘e-cigarettes’) are battery-powered products that use heat to release a visible vapour that contains liquid nicotine that is inhaled by the user. They are designed to replicate smoking behaviour without the use of tobacco, and some look very similar to conventional cigarettes. However, the use of these would not be classed as “smoking” according to the legal definition of this.
Whilst e-cigarettes may help some smokers to give up, guidance from the British Medical Association states that there is a lack of evidence about the health risks that they pose to the individual using them and those in close proximity. Additionally, we are concerned that electronic cigarettes may create the impression that smoking is accepted within the workplace, and we also have concerns that it is difficult to differentiate visually between e-cigarettes and normal cigarettes at a distance.
The use of electronic cigarettes is also banned within our premises. To allow those who choose to use ecigarettes in an area free from those smoking ‘regular’ cigarettes, we have designated an area adjacent to the Lee Hall as a ‘vaping’ area. This ‘vaping’ area is not to be used by those smoking ‘regular’ cigarettes.
Enforcement of this policy
Smoking in an area other than those designated as a smoking area will be regarded as general misconduct and will be dealt with in accordance with the College’s disciplinary procedures.
Implementation, monitoring and review of this policy
The Health & Safety Committee has overall responsibility for implementing and monitoring this policy, which will be reviewed on a regular basis following its implementation (at least annually) and additionally whenever there are relevant changes in legislation or to our working practices. Employees will be consulted about any proposed changes via the Staff Communication & Consultation Committee, and adequate notice given of these.