SGA discusses “smokey problems” on campus

Aubrey Zych, Staff Writer

On Wednesday, Oct. 12, members of the Student Government Association (SGA) met to discuss the possibility of Le Moyne becoming a smoke-free campus.

The idea was brought to the Student Government’s attention by Le Moyne College President Fred Pestello, who suggested the idea in response to the numerous complaints about smokers on campus. Currently, 15 college campuseas in New York State are smoke-free, and Pestello would like to see Le Moyne added to that list.

Le Moyne currently has a rule stating that smokers must be at least 25 feet away from a school building if they are going to smoke on campus. However, this rule is seldom enforced, leaving many students upset. Students have complained that they have to “walk through a cloud of smoke” just to get to class, and that the dorms smell of cigarettes from the smokers right outside the building. Some students are even forced to leave their windows closed during the hot days of the year to keep their entire room from smelling of smoke.

Enforcing a new smoke-free campus could solve these problems, but could also raise others among student smokers. Taking away students’ right to smoke on campus and forcing them to venture off-campus could easily anger some.

These dilemmas raised questions for the SGA about what needs to be done to keep all students, smokers and non-smokers, satisfied at Le Moyne. The SGA collaborated on different ideas about what they believe would be the best approach at solving such a difficult situation. Many students agreed that enforcing an entirely smoke-free campus would be the best approach, while other students were completely against it, thinking of students who would then be forced to leave campus. Some students suggested enforcing the “25-foot rule” more strictly through ticketing those who disobey it, and other students suggested changing the current rule to 50 feet, making entering buildings less of a discomfort.

Being such a tough situation, as of now, there is no permanent plan to change any rules for smokers on campus. However, the SGA plans to make a definite decision in their upcoming meetings.

If you have a suggestion, idea or question about Le Moyne becoming a smoke-free campus, have your voice heard! The SGA always welcomes new ideas and suggestions, and can be contacted through their website at lemoyne.campusgroups.com.