The State University of New York could soon become the largest public education system in the U.S. to ban smoking on its campuses.
The SUNY Board of Regents last week adopted a measure supporting a ban on tobacco use and supporting any legislation coming from the state legislature that would institute such a ban.
Board of Regents chairman H. Carl McCall said in a statement that SUNY can be "a larger part of the solution" to what he called the serious problem of tobacco use on college campuses.
“By establishing a policy that will prohibit the use of tobacco among our 468,000 students and 88,000 employees on campuses across New York, we will have a positive impact on their health and that of our visitors,” he said.
SUNY banned smoking indoors on campus in 2007; Stony Brook University Hospital became a smoke-free campus in 2008.
According to the SUNY statement, adults ages 18 to 24 have the highest rate of smoking, and smoking on campus has sometimes led to fires in dormitories and other campus facilities.