April 11, 2011 - The days are numbered for smoking on the campus of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Smoking has been banned as of June 2013. The people who make the laws and set the standards on the Amherst campus now have to decide how to punish those who light up anywhere on campus after the ban goes into action.
Just look inside the many cigarette receptacles throughout the Amherst campus and you can see a lot of people smoke. It's just as apparent from the cigarette butts improperly discarded. UMass senior Mark Valdez will be long gone when the smoking ban takes effect, but smoker Robin Baj intends to still be working there in two years. “I am a smoker and I come out on my break and I have to leave the campus, I'll have to get in my car and leave the campus,” Baj said.
For some students who have never lit up a cigarette in their lives, the smoking ban goes against their sense of personal freedom on a college campus. “It's getting a little constricted. I mean UMass prides itself as a very liberal campus,” UMass senior Jeff Cappello said.
It’s a campus where so many smokers do not show common courtesy getting rid of their cigarette butts properly, that once a year anti smoking advocates pick up hundreds of pounds of butts that have accumulated during the previous 12 months, and the 2013 smoking ban has become an instant selling point for some parents considering sending their kids to UMass next year.
“I would prefer being non smoking because It's a disgusting habit, your clothes smell, It kills you. A lot of things will kill you, but that's just one more nail in the coffin,” David Fishbein of Cresskill, New Jersey said.
The people who make the laws and set the standards on the Amherst campus now have to decide how to punish those who light up anywhere on campus after the ban goes into action.
References: AUDIO - Praise, criticism for UMass smoking ban Ban will take effect in June of 2013, Sy Becker, WWLP,com, 4/8/2011; Plan to turn UMass into a smoke-free campus by 2013 riles community by STEVE PFARRER, Staff Writer .gazettenet.com. 4/8/2011.