Tobacco-Free Boston Campus

A view of Boston from the Greenway.

Dear Boston Faculty and Staff,

The Boston campus of Tufts University is launching a tobacco-free campus initiative to be implemented on April 16, 2012.

The goals of the Tobacco-Free Tufts Boston initiative are to:

  1. improve the health of our community;
  2. create a culture of support for employees who would like to stop using tobacco products; and,
  3. reduce involuntary exposure to secondhand smoke

Effective April 16, 2012, smoking will be prohibited on university and university-leased property in Boston, including the area directly around entrances to the buildings, loading docks, and parking garages. Smoking is already prohibited inside university buildings.

We are joining Tufts Medical Center and the Floating Hospital for Children in this initiative. We are also joining the numerous healthcare organizations that have called for tobacco-free workplaces and medical centers in the city of Boston.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 70% of smokers in the United States want to quit, and more than 40% try to do so each year. We know that it is difficult to give up smoking and want to make sure you know the resources available to you.

Our health insurance plans have programs to help you quit and additional resources are available to you through the Employee Assistance Program (1-800-451-1834). The Massachusetts Smokers' Helpline (1-800-QUIT-NOW/1-800-784-8669) offers free and confidential help for people who want to quit. Online help is also available through smokefree.gov, which offers a step-by-step quit guide.

There are many reasons to stop smoking. Here are just four from the American Cancer Society:

  • Smoking not only harms your health but it hurts the health of those around you. Exposure to secondhand smoke (also called environmental tobacco smoke or passive smoking) includes exhaled smoke as well as smoke from burning cigarettes.
  • Studies have shown that secondhand smoke causes thousands of deaths each year from lung cancer and heart disease in healthy non-smokers.
  • Quitting smoking has major and immediate health benefits for men and women of all ages. These benefits apply to people who already have smoking-related disease and those who don't.
  • Quitting smoking lowers the risk of lung cancer, other cancers, heart attack, stroke, and chronic lung disease.
To assist with the implementation of the Tobacco-Free Tufts Boston initiative, Tufts is forming an advisory group. This group will seek perspectives from both smoking and non-smoking members of the community on the Boston campus.

Your input is important to us. If you are interested in contributing suggestions, or in serving on the advisory group, please contact either of us by email.

Kathe Cronin
Vice President of Human Resources

Sabrina Williams
Director, Human Resources Boston and Grafton