A Letter from the Office of the President:
As some of you may have already learned through early media coverage, university leadership gave final approval recently to a policy forbidding smoking at Oregon State University’s Corvallis campus that will go into effect in Fall 2012. The decision, made following a second in-depth Cabinet discussion of findings and a recommendation in support of the policy from the OSU Smoke Free Review Task Force, was not arrived at lightly, but was made in recognition of the destructive, disease-causing nature of smoking and of the right that students, faculty, staff and campus visitors have to breathe clean air in a smoke-free campus environment.
I recognize that while the strong majority of our campus community members do not smoke, many struggle with this highly addictive practice and its many damaging effects. Over the next 18 months, the university will provide information, education and access to cessation programs and assistance in an effort to help those who would like to kick the habit. It is our collective hope that by the time the policy takes effect, the number of smokers at OSU will have dropped significantly, mitigating individual difficulties around compliance. We will also discuss other OSU locations and policies regarding smoking at those venues.
With this policy change, OSU joins hundreds of campuses in the Pacific Northwest and around the United States that have already enacted such bans. It is my hope that by doing so, we will improve the health of our community now and for generations to come.
Edward J. Ray