Designated Smoke-Free Housing, Smoking in the Other Residence Halls, the Smoking Policy

The College has adopted a smoking policy to protect individuals who do not wish to be exposed to smoke of any kind. All non-residential buildings have been designated “smoke-free areas.” No one may smoke inside any such building, and smokers should take care not to cause others discomfort when smoking too close to an entrance of such a building.

Students’ Council was given the responsibility by the College to determine the smoking policy within the residence halls.

Students’ Council determined that smoking should be permitted in the residence halls so long as no other resident(s) object. Smoking in College housing is a privilege, not a right.

Please see the full Smoking Policy, adopted by Students’ Council at www.haverford.edu/reslife/policies/files/Smoking_Policy.pdf

The Smoking Policy (adopted by Students’ Council, February 2005)

Students’ Council has determined that smoking should be permitted in the residence halls so long as no other resident(s) object. Smoking in College housing is a privilege, not a right.

Amendment to the Smoking Policy adopted by Students’ Council, October, 2011

Let the Smoking Policy be amended to reflect that all first-year residential buildings are smoke-free spaces, effective with the Class of 2016. This policy applies to all residents and guests, regardless of class year, and includes spaces such as individual rooms, common rooms, hallways, stairways, bathrooms, etc.   Smoking will still be allowed outside of first-year buildings, although the interior courtyard of Tritton shall be smoke-free.

Residential Life & the Smoking Policy

Designated Smoke-free Housing

Students’ Council has determined that the Residential Life Committee is permitted to designate smoke-free residential spaces.  SMOKING OF ANY KIND WILL NOT BE PERMITTED IN THESE SMOKE-FREE SPACES.

PLEASE NOTE:  E-cigarettes and personal vaporizers are not approved for use in any of the designated Smoke-Free Residence Halls.

The Residential Life Committee, in order to protect the health of residents, will designate smoke-free residential areas before Spring Room Draw each year.  This housing will be offered during the appropriate round in Spring Room Draw. There will not be a separate draw for smoke-free housing.

Students who choose to live in designated smoke-free residential spaces will be required to complete a Confirmation Form and sign a pledge to uphold the Honor Code by not smoking in these spaces.

Smoking optional Housing

Designated smoke-free housing:

  • Kim and Tritton Halls, including their interior courtyards, were designed and built as designated smoke-free buildings.
  • All first-year buildings are designated smoke-free buildings.
  • Each year the Residential Life Committee and the Office of Residential Life surveys the student population about their interest in living in smoke-free housing for the following year.  Based on student demand for designated smoke-free housing additional designated smoke-free housing is added.
  • Designated smoke-free housing for the 2013-2014 academic year will be Barclay Hall, Cadbury House, Comfort Hall, Gummere Hall, Jones Hall, Kim Hall, Tritton Hall, and HCA #22, 26, 30, 31, 34, 35 and 42.

In spaces that are not designated as smoke-free, smokers are to reach an agreement with their neighbors about smoking as indicated in the Smoking Policy.

Where smoking is permitted smokers should take steps to curtail smoking behaviors that may be hazardous or unwelcome to residents in a residence halls. For example, smokers should:

  • make sufficient efforts to avoid setting off smoke detectors but in no way should lifesaving smoke detectors be disabled or be otherwise tampered with. (Smoke Detector Policy:  Effective March 3, 2011, anyone found to have tampered with or otherwise rendered ineffective any smoke detector or other fire/life safety equipment in the dorms and apartments WILL immediately lose their housing privileges. Depending on the circumstances, further action may be taken. There will be no punitive action if you call to report a nonworking alarm or even one which you suspect might not be working properly, for any reason. Students are to call Campus Safety (x1111) who will respond immediately 24/7 to repair smoke alarms. If you have any questions about any aspect of dorm fire safety equipment, please do not hesitate to contact Mark Sweeney (at msweeney@haverford.edu or 610-896-1111), the College’s Safety Coordinator.)
  • try to ventilate smoke away from hallways and other rooms
  • use ashtrays for reasons of safety in order to properly and safely dispose of cigarettes.
  • not  misuse or vandalize fire safety equipment
  • not smoke in locations (like entryways) that will force others to walk through smoke
  • not smoke in or near residential areas that have been designated “smoke-free”

Students who smoke are strongly encouraged to check with their neighbor(s) before smoking. It is better to reach an understanding from the outset than to wait for someone to complain. Smokers should also realize that their “neighbor(s)” might include students on other floors of the residence. Residents are also responsible for informing their friends or guests of smoking policies and/or understandings that are in effect in their residence hall. In addition, in some emergency situations (such as someone suffering from an asthma attack or a smoke detector going off), smokers should understand that they may be asked to cease smoking until a formal confrontation can be arranged.

When conflicts about smoking do occur, it is important to remember that the Honor Code requires students to try “to resolve conflicts by engaging others in dialogues that yield greater awareness for all parties involved.” Under this policy there are two possible scenarios:

  • Smoke-Free Housing: If smoke is present in a designated smoke-free space, the smoker should be immediately contacted and told to stop smoking. If problems with smoke continue, a student is to contact a member of Honor Council for guidance.
  • Smoking optional Housing: If after participating in dialogue and no compromise is possible, or a compromise is tried but fails to work, the confronting party should contact the smoker and ask him/her to stop smoking. If problems with smoke continue, a student is to contact a member of Honor Council for guidance. If a smoker is confronted, he or she must cease to smoke in that area indefinitely. It is the smoker’s responsibility to find other outlets for their smoking habit; the smoker should not have to be confronted again. If a problem continues, students with concerns are encouraged to contact a member of Honor Council for guidance. At this point, it is the smoker’s responsibility to find other outlets for their smoking habit; the smoker should not have to be confronted again.

Why We Have a Policy

According to the Preamble of the Haverford College Honor Code, “If a diverse community is to prosper, its members must attempt to come to terms with their differences; this goal is only possible if students seek mutual understanding by means of respectful communication.” One way in which our community is diverse is the decision of whether or not to smoke. Some members of the community smoke frequently; some smoke only occasionally; some do not smoke but are not bothered by those who do; and some cannot be around smoke at all for either health or personal reasons. It is important for those of all opinions about smoking to be able to live together in a way that respects everyone’s choices without impinging on the rights of others. The College has adopted a smoking policy to protect individuals who do not wish to be exposed to smoke of any kind. All non-residential buildings have been designated “smoke-free areas.” No one may smoke inside any such building, and smokers should take care not to cause others discomfort when smoking too close to an entrance of such a building. We must strive to protect the health of those who choose not to be subjected to smoke. Secondhand cigarette smoke has been classified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a known cause of lung cancer in humans (Group A carcinogen). Secondhand smoke alone is estimated by the EPA to cause approximately 3,000 lung cancer deaths in nonsmokers each year. In addition, other forms of smoke have shown in studies to be more harmful than cigarette smoke in that many other substances contain some of the same, and sometimes more than, cancer-causing chemicals as secondhand cigarette smoke. Smoke travels beyond the confines of individual rooms, groups of rooms, or apartments, and it has free reign in the corridors and stairwells. Smokers can create unpleasant and often hazardous living conditions for non-smokers. If you smoke, you must recognize the right of fellow community members to have a healthy, smoke free residential environment. Smoking in college housing is a privilege, not a right.

1. The Center for Disease Control: Second Hand Smoke Guide

2. National Institute of Health’s National Institute on Drug Abuse

Last modified: September 11, 2013