Smoking cigarettes in Californian college campuses could soon be a thing of the past if the bill seeking to bar the act is assented into law by the governor of the state. The law, which will be effective at the beginning of 2018 if passed, will make the Californian State University and California Community College compounds smoke-free zones.
This development comes after the state assembly voted the bill that bans the use of tobacco products including electronic cigarettes on all college campuses. The bill was proposed by Kevin McCarty and was inspired by the Californian University’s semi-autonomous system that advocates for a tobacco-free policy in its campuses. McCarty’s initiative was further provoked by the research findings reported by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention that smoking and exposure to second-hand smoke is detrimental to overall health of people.
According to McCarty, there is a need for everybody including the Californian State government to promote healthy practices and a healthy environment for everyone. He recognized that the majority of the population consists of young adults and teenagers who still have a lot to accomplish in life and that it could be unfair to expose them to risk factors of life-threatening diseases associated with smoking such as lung cancer and heart disease.
If the bill is passed into law by the Californian Governor Jerry Brown, 72 community college districts and university campuses will be under the protection against exposure to tobacco smoke. 18 of the 72 community college districts and 37 campuses already have policies that ban tobacco smoking within their compounds. This could mean that more than 500,000 young adults will enjoy their learning activities in campus without being exposed to external risks that could damage their state of health.
Those who will violate the laws stipulated in the bill will face clear consequences. Violators will be fined $25 for the first time caught committing the offense. The second offense will attract a $100 penalty and other additional fines. The money collected from the fines will be channeled to the anti-smoking initiatives to help create awareness and set up cessation programs in all parts of the Californian state.