CLEVELAND — It could soon be illegal to light up at a local university, even if you are standing outside.
Cleveland State University is considering a total campus smoking ban.
Just like in other public places in Ohio, it is already illegal to smoke inside buildings on the campus of Cleveland State University.
“Just in between classes, it’s a good stress reliever… gotta get that nicotine,” said student Jackie Cappuies.
But now the school’s board of trustees is considering banning all tobacco products from campus… even outside.
“I think we should make it smoke free,” said student Caiye Maceo. “Just because I don’t like being around smoke.”
“Some people who have classes back to back and they want to take a smoke break, they’re not gonna walk, like all the way across the street to go smoke a cigarette, so they should, like, have the right to just sit outside and smoke,” said student Kassidy Nemeth.
The proposed policy comes after the Ohio Board of Regents, in July, asked public universities to impose a tobacco ban.
“Part of the problem with Cleveland State is that there’s public sidewalks and roads intertwined throughout the entire campus, so we have to study the best way to do this effectively and in everyone’s interest,” said CSU spokesman Joe Mosbrook.
The university is still trying to figure out exactly how it will implement the ban, but leaders said they will seek advice from other local institutions, such as the Cleveland Clinic.
“The Cleveland Clinic is actually very similar to Cleveland State in the sense that it’s in public land and they’ve done it campus-wide throughout the Clinic, so we may look to the Clinic and see how they’ve done it, and look for best practices instead of trying to reinvent the wheel,” Mosbrook said.
University officials said they sometimes get complaints about having to walk through smoke from smokers congregating in front of buildings.
They say they would also consider creating designated smoking areas.
“I guess I have mixed feelings, people have a right to smoke in public, but in the same perspective, it’s the university’s right to say they’re not allowed,” said student Matthew Burmeister.