University of Michigan banning tobacco use on all three of its campuses

It's been a while since smoking was allowed on the campuses of the University of Michigan. But smoking has changed, so the school is changing its policy.

ANN ARBOR – Effective Nov. 17, the University of Michigan will ban the use of all tobacco products on its three campuses.

The move is in conjunction with the Great American Smokeout, an annual event on the third Thursday of November by the American Cancer Society that encourages people to stop smoking.

The existing smoking policy on campus will be revised and become the Tobacco-Free University Premises policy.

Tobacco products not covered under the current policy that will be banned include:

  • Battery-powered nicotine delivery devices such as vapes and vape pens, e-cigars, e-cigarettes and hookah pens.
  • Smokeless tobacco products such as dip, snuff and chew.

Under the new policy, the use of tobacco products will be prohibited on university grounds, in buildings and facilities and in university-owned vehicles.

Public sidewalks situated along public thoroughfares and privately-owned vehicles do not fall under the policy and smoking in these areas will be permitted.

“This update is a natural progression of our efforts to improve the overall well-being of our campus community,” chief health officer and associate vice president of student life for health and wellness Rob Ernst said in a release.

“Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death, disease and disability in the U.S. When we instituted our smoke-free policy in 2011, this new generation of products was not commonly used. But during the last decade, the sale of ENDS has more than doubled.”

In 2016, Michigan Medicine updated its Tobacco-Free Environment Policy, prohibiting smokeless tobacco products and electronic cigarettes.

About the Author:

Meredith has worked for WDIV since August 2017 and was voted one of Washtenaw County's best journalists in 2019 by eCurrent's readers. She covers the community of Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in International Broadcast Journalism from City University London, UK.