Thursday, September 24, 2009

UF to ban smoking starting next academic year

The University of Florida will ban on-campus smoking starting July 1, 2010. Shands HealthCare and the Health Science Center will be tobacco-free beginning November 1 of this year.

The news is music to my ears, and lungs for that matter. Just this evening, I was walking home from my anthropology class enjoying the fresh nighttime air in The Plaza of the Americas.

Much to my dismay, a fellow walker's cigarette smoke got caught in the wind and billowed its way up my nostrils.

This was not a pleasant way to start off the weekend.

The July 1 campus-wide ban will include all types of tobacco.

According to the Independent Florida Alligator, 64 percent of student voters approved the ban during the previous spring semester.

Tobacco-Free Together, an organization that is part of the Health Science Center and ShandsHealthcare, will provide information about "counseling services, self-help materials and medicines to help smokers and tobacco-users quit successfully," which can be accessed on their Web site.

Gainesville was recognized as the healthiest community in America. A smoking ban could do nothing but keep the college town in top health for years to come.

More information about the ban and resources to break an addictive habit can be found here.

*Note: This may not be the newest of news for Gainesville readers, but I was reminded about this great news in one of my morning classes.

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