Smoking ban still failing to be enforced

The ban on smoking and tobacco products has been in effect at Truman State for over three months. However, few students have seen a decrease in the amount of smoking on campus.

Since the smoking ban went into effect on July 1, Director of Public Safety Sarah Holzmeier says that students continue to smoke on campus. She says the ban is difficult to enforce. Holzmeier says the sidewalks around the edge of campus are not technically university property, and are instead owned by the City of Kirksville.

“Regardless of the current policy, if people want to smoke on [those] sidewalks, they are free to do so,” Holzmeier says. “However, the parking lots are a different story. We do see cigarette butts there all the time but we can’t catch everyone, although we try our best.”

Holzmeier says student advisors play a vital role in enforcing the no-smoking policy on campus.

“They will confiscate cigarettes from students and let us know,” Holzmeier says. “But most of the time once the cigarettes are confiscated we do not have another problem.”

Sophomore Drew Orscheln says he has had difficulty coping with the new smoking regulations. He says smoking helps lower his stress and anxiety levels.

“I really need to smoke to concentrate, but I cannot do that on campus without the fear of getting in trouble,” Orscheln says. “Now I do most of my work at home. It’s not ideal.”

Orschlen says that he would like to see the addition of designated smoking areas on campus where smokers could congregate out of the way of the rest of the student body. He says this solution would allow students to smoke on campus without subjecting others to the health risks of secondhand smoke. 

Sophomore Connor Montgomery says that regardless of designated smoking areas, secondhand smoke can be especially dangerous to those with health concerns.

“It is bad for everybody, but the smoke could send me into an asthma attack at any time,” Montgomery says.