The University does not allow smoking in, or within 5 metres of its buildings
The University of Exeter (the ‘University’), as a high quality employer and educational establishment, wishes to provide a safe, clean, comfortable and healthy environment for all of its staff, students and visitors.
The University is required by the Health and Safety at Work Act (1974) to ensure the health, safety and welfare of employees whilst at work. This includes provision of a working environment that is, as far as is reasonably practicable, safe and without risk to health. The University is also required by the English Smoke-Free Regulations (2007) to ensure that no smoking occurs in any of its enclosed circulation areas and shared office spaces.
Tobacco smoke is classified as a Group A carcinogen1; a substance known to cause cancer in humans and for which there is no recognised safe level of exposure. Passive smoking is a known cause of disease and people who do not smoke tobacco products have an enhanced risk of contracting lung cancer if they are exposed to environmental tobacco smoke.
The University therefore considers that it has a legal and moral duty to actively pursue a policy to attain a tobacco smoke-free environment for non-smokers. It also considers that it has a duty to provide support for those members of the University who wish to cease smoking.
1by the UK Government’s Department of Health’s Committee on Carcinogenicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment.
The following Policy, which has been approved jointly by the Safety Committee and the Strategy, Planning and Resources Committee (SPaRC), prohibits smoking in University buildings apart from in certain designated areas. Smoking will be permitted outside but at a distance of at least five metres away from the perimeter of buildings to ensure that tobacco smoke does not re-enter via doors, windows or air intakes. The Policy also describes the support it will provide staff and students who wish to cease smoking.
2.1 Smoking is prohibited
- within buildings2, except in staff residential accommodation or in student study bedrooms that are designated as ‘Smoking’;
- within a five metre boundary of the exterior of buildings2;
- within vehicles owned and operated by the University; and
- within vehicles hired or leased for University business.
2owned or managed by the University. For building(s) owned or managed by the University but located on grounds owned or managed by a third party, (a) and (b) apply to the building(s) and the smoking policy of the third party applies to the grounds (where smoking may be prohibited entirely).
This Policy applies to all staff, students, visitors and contractors.
- People smoking tobacco products in prohibited areas (see 2.1) should be politely asked to desist.
- Refusal to desist is unacceptable and should be reported to the building management (eg Buildings Facilities Manager, Director of Building or Residence Manager).
- For staff and students, refusal to desist will constitute a disciplinary offence. For a first breach of the policy, staff and students will be reminded of the requirements of the policy, directed towards support for smoking cessation (see 2.5) and advised that any further infringements may result in formal disciplinary action.
- Visitors and contractors who refuse to desist should be politely asked to leave the building (with the assistance of security staff if necessary).
- Staff and students should refer any concerns about non-compliance with this policy (in writing) to the appropriate College Dean or Head of Service or Director of Building. Where non-compliance continues following such a reference, staff should refer their concerns to the Health and Safety Office and students, to the Guild Health and Safety Co-ordinator.
2.4 Support for Smoking Cessation
- The University will provide free support to staff and students who wish to desist from smoking. Staff should contact the Occupational Health Service, Human Resources, Northcote House (Tel:- 01392 263136). Students should contact the Sport and Wellness Development Officer, Streatham Sports Centre (Tel:- 01392 262039), the Student Health Centre or their own GP.
- Additionally or alternatively they may wish to contact organisations listed in the Sources of information and advice page.
- Exterior ‘No smoking’ signs will be fitted at entrances to buildings. Interior ‘No Smoking’ signs will be fitted in circulation spaces and offices within buildings. Extra signs will be available from the Health and Safety Office.
- Examples of exterior and interior 'No Smoking' signs are available for download.