In advance of going tobacco free in fall 2016, California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) President Jane Close Conoley has announced the launch of the Breathe Campaign, a campus-wide smoking cessation project.
In a release issued this afternoon, Close Conoley said the campaign was focused on promoting public awareness of the health risks of tobacco use and exposure to smoke, including vapor.
“My goal is not to punish smoking, a very powerful addiction, but to offer help to those trying to quit,” said Close Conoley in a statement. “Research demonstrates the adverse health effects of smoking on both users and bystanders. The Breathe Campaign sends an affirmative reminder that everyone’s health depends on each of us.”
The plan to be tobacco free in 2016 was voted on by the CSULB student body in 2013. Close Conoley created a campus task force to develop a campus tobacco and smoke-free policy implementation plan, according to the release.
The Breathe Campaign was created to assist those who will be most affected by the new policy continue to feel valued by the university.
According to the 2014 U.S. Surgeon General’s Report in 2014, smoking causes about 480,000 deaths annually, in addition to its use being linked to diabetes, heart disease, stroke and atherosclerosis.
The release stated that task force members represent all parts of the CSULB community, including the population that uses tobacco. Representatives include those from the Academic Senate, Associated Students, Human Resources, Student Health Services, Student Affairs, California Faculty Association, Student Union, Athletics, Carpenter Center for Performing Arts, College of Continuing and Professional Education’s American Language Institute, President’s Office, Administration and University Police.