GW will again promote campus smoking ban

Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo

Vice President for Human Resources Sabrina Ellis

Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo.
Vice President of Human Resources Sabrina Ellis has helped promote the campus smoking ban since it was enacted last August.

Nine employees have been referred to Human Resources for violating the smoking ban since it started in August, a top administrator said Wednesday.

Vice President for Human Resources Sabrina Ellis said the University has mostly seen success while enforcing the smoking ban, but said too many people walking through the campus ignore or are unaware of the ban.

To improve compliance, Ellis said she will focus on connecting faculty and staff with GW’s free quitting programs as well as promoting the policy with more on-campus signs this semester.

“It has been going well. That isn’t to say people aren’t smoking in places they shouldn’t be smoking,” Ellis said about the policy, which officially launched in August. “That is the issue that we’re seeing – people walking through the campus – which we knew was going to be the challenge as we went into it,” Ellis said.

After announcing the ban last year, the University stayed quiet on the types of repercussions violators would face, prompting concerns from many staff members who said the rules were unclear. The policy also spurred more than a dozen students to protest in November 2012.

D.C. law allows building owners to ban smoking up to 25 feet away from the building but GW cannot ban smoking across campus completely because of privately owned businesses in Foggy Bottom.

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