Proposal would extend UF smoking ban to Greeks

The University of Florida’s tobacco ban would apply to fraternities and sororities when it takes effect next year, under a proposal released Wednesday by the university.

UF banned tobacco use in Ben Hill Griffin Stadium starting this season and on the property of health-related facilities starting Nov. 1. A university-wide ban is planned for July 1.

The proposed regulation, which is scheduled to be considered next month by UF trustees, would prohibit smoking as well as the use of smokeless tobacco and electronic devices meant to simulate smoking. It would apply to university-owned land in Alachua County and Jacksonville.

It also would apply to land occupied or controlled by fraternities and sororities recognized by UF, which includes property on and off campus.

Nick Holmes, interim president of UF’s Intrafraternity Council, said fraternity members typically cheap cigarettes outside as a courtesy to others. He said members had concerns about whether their properties would be patrolled to prevent smoking.

“We’re curious to see how the university enforces the smoking ban,” he said.

UF police won’t be enforcing the policy, said Ed Poppell, UF’s vice president for business affairs. Instead, he said, students would self-enforce the ban, and any problem cases would handled by judicial affairs.

“This is going to primarily be peer-pressure enforcement,” he said. “In the case of employees, it would be part of the expectation of the job.”

Most UF sororities already ban smoking and would have no problem following the policy, said Jamie Dillinger, president of UF’s Panhellenic Council.

“It’s already been something that’s understood when you live in a chapter house,” she said.

Poppell said there were few problems when smoking was banned in campus buildings, and he expected the same situation when the policy is extended outside those facilities.

“I think people are going to be very receptive and very compliant,” he said.


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