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Frequently Asked Questions



- What is the effect of the University of Arizona Smoking and Tobacco Policy?

The policy states the following:

The University is dedicated to providing a healthy environment for those who participate in University activities. In support of this goal, the University prohibits the use of products that contain tobacco or nicotine, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, electronic smoking devices, such as e-cigarettes, bidis, kreteks, hookahs, water pipes, and all forms of smokeless tobacco. Littering campus with remains of tobacco or smoking-related products also is prohibited.

This policy applies to anyone who is on the University of Arizona’s main campus in Tucson, the Arizona Health Sciences Center, the Phoenix Biomedical Campus and UA South, or in a University of Arizona vehicle.

- How does this policy change what was allowed in the previous smoking policy?

The previous policy prohibited smoking in all buildings and within 25 feet of a building entrance or air vent. The Arizona Health Sciences Center became tobacco-free in July 2013.

- When did the policy take effect?

The policy is in full effect as of August 25, 2014.

- Where can I find a copy of this policy?

The policy is posted on the UA Policies website at

- Why has this new policy been implemented?

The purpose of the new policy is to protect the health of all the members of the UA community. Smoking, use of tobacco products, and exposure to secondhand smoke have all been proven to be harmful to physical health.

- How was the policy developed? Who was involved?

The University of Arizona Smoking and Tobacco Policy was developed through a collaborative effort that included representatives from the Student Health Advocacy Committee (SHAC), Student Affairs, Campus Health, Human Resources, and the Office of the General Counsel. Several hundred written comments were received during the spring and summer review period, and the policy language was revised several times based on many thoughtful suggestions.

- Are there exceptions to the policy?

The policy permits limited tobacco use for research; educational; and traditional, cultural or religious purposes, All these exceptions require prior approval from UA administration. See the policy document at for details.

- Have the other two state universities gone tobacco-free?

Both Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University are tobacco-free universities. Nationwide, more than 1,100 U.S. colleges and universities are 100% tobacco free.

- What other state agencies have gone tobacco-free?


- Which tobacco products are prohibited at the University of Arizona under this policy?

Prohibited products include, but are not limited to: cigarettes, cigars, pipes, electronic smoking devices (including e-cigarettes), bidis, kreteks, hookahs, water pipes, all forms of smokeless tobacco, and any other product containing tobacco. FDA-approved smoking cessation aids such as nicotine patches, gum, lozenges, or sprays are permitted.

- Why is smokeless tobacco banned? It does not cause secondhand smoke.

Smokeless tobacco also has negative effects on health. As part of the University’s commitment to foster the health of the campus community, use of these products is prohibited on campus.

- Can I use e-cigarettes?

No. A task force of UA stakeholders has concluded that electronic smoking devices should be prohibited on campus. See E-Cigarette Policy Review Task Force Executive Summary of Recommendations and Rationale and E-Cigarette Policy Review Task Force Findings and Recommendations.


- To whom does the policy apply?

The policy affects all UA employees, students, affiliates, associates, contractors, volunteers, and visitors—in short, anyone on a UA campus or in a UA vehicle.

- Is there anywhere people can smoke or use tobacco products on the campuses of the University of Arizona?

No. As of August 25, 2014, the use of any tobacco products is prohibited on UA campuses. The policy applies to all UA campuses, buildings, structures, athletics facilities, parking structures, and vehicles.

- Will University parking structures and parking lots be tobacco-free?

University parking lots and structures are covered by the University of Arizona Smoking and Tobacco Policy.

- I am not at the University of Arizona main campus but at a satellite location (e.g., agricultural extension, telescope). Does this policy apply to me?

The policy applies to the University of Arizona’s main campus in Tucson, the Arizona Health Sciences Campus in Tucson, the Phoenix Biomedical Campus and UA South. E-cigarettes are prohibited in all UA owned buildings, structures, athletic facilities, parking garages, or vehicles, regardless of their location.

- Does the tobacco-free policy apply to tailgate gatherings or other recreational activities and events at outdoor stadiums and fields?

Yes. Any event that takes place on a UA campus; in a UA building, structure, or athletic facility; or in a UA vehicle is covered under this policy.

Regarding Arizona Stadium for Football Season, note that facility policies, including no re-entry, will remain in effect.

- Will the policy apply on weekends or University closures?

Yes. The policy is in effect 24 hours a day, all year long.


- How will I know if I’m on University of Arizona property?

You can find a map of the Tucson Campus at

Additional maps are coming soon. When in doubt, please use best judgment and be courteous to those around you.

- Don’t I have a right to smoke outside, if I’m not bothering anyone else?

The University of Arizona has the right to manage and control the activities that occur on its campuses, in its buildings and in its vehicles. There is no legal or constitutional guarantee of a right to smoke or use tobacco products. The policy does not regulate people’s individual choices to use or not use tobacco or nicotine; it merely governs people’s behavior while they are on UA campuses.

- If I don’t want to stop smoking or using tobacco, what are my options?

Individuals who wish to smoke have the option to leave campus. Some employees may be permitted to do so only on breaks or during lunch. Anyone who is on campus for a prolonged period may wish to carry nicotine gum or other FDA-approved over-the-counter nicotine product. This policy does not apply to personal vehicles.


- What resources are available if I want to quit tobacco?

The University of Arizona Tobacco-free website has a number of resources for those who want to quit smoking or give up the use of tobacco products. The Arizona Smokers’ Helpline (1.800.556.6222), is also available. For a list of their services, see go to

UA employees and students are also encouraged to consult Life and Work Connections' "Quit Tobacco" resources:

Want to speak with someone at Campus Health on how to quit? Contact Lynn Reyes at (520) 621-3334.

The following online resources can also be useful:

- Do my health benefits cover tobacco cessation programs or medications?

The student and employee benefit plans provide some assistance with smoking cessation. For a quick summary of smoking cessation assistance provided by employee health plans, click here. Employees may choose to put money into a flexible spending account to pay for some smoking cessation services. Find more information regarding flexible spending accounts here.


The Arizona Board of Regents Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP), administered by Aetna, offers a number of tobacco cessation benefits for students covered under the plan. These include:

  • Healthy Lifestyle Coaching Tobacco Free - Coaches help students:
    • Set goals they can handle
    • Review health history and any medicines they take
    • Develop quitting strategies, coping skills
    • Complete 3 sessions with a coach and receive a free 8-week supply of nicotine replacement therapy
  • Prescription Drugs and Over-the-Counter Drugs for tobacco cessation, covered at 100%
  • Screening and Counseling for tobacco cessation, covered at 100%

Please contact the Campus Health Insurance office at for additional information on SHIP benefits. Campus Health offers counseling and medications (prescription and over-the-counter) that can help you quit. All currently enrolled students are eligible to use Campus Health, regardless of their insurance coverage. If you are not enrolled in SHIP, check with your insurance carrier for coverage benefits that are specific to your plan.

- What is ASHLine?

ASHLine is Arizona’s tobacco quitline, providing free behavioral support by phone to help people quit. When you enroll, you will be paired up with a coach who will walk you through the quitting process. People who use this type of support are more likely to quit successfully!

When you call and enroll, you will be eligible to receive two weeks of free nicotine replacement therapy (gum, patch, or lozenge) to help you get started with the quitting process! Additionally, joining a support system can help you stay positive and motivated during this process.


- Am I required to quit smoking in order to keep my job or my student enrollment at UA?

The policy only regulates what people do while they are on a University campus or in a University vehicle. You are free to make your own personal choices at other times and in other locations.

- What will happen if I don’t follow the policy?

Supervisors will discuss the policy with their employees, affiliates, associates, volunteers, or contractors. Some employees who wish to continue to smoke may be able to arrange to leave campus on breaks or lunch. An employee who persists in violating the Smoking and Tobacco Policy may be subject to disciplinary action. Refusal to follow the policy by a DCC could result in a termination of that individual’s relationship with the University. Visitors may be required to leave campus if they fail to comply. Students may be subject to action under the Student Code of Conduct.

- What do I do if I find someone smoking?

The success of this policy depends on the entire campus community holding itself accountable.

If you feel comfortable, we encourage you to respectfully inform anyone who is using tobacco about the policy. Keep in mind, they may be completely unaware of the policy or not realize that the location is considered a part of a UA campus. You may choose to to pass out a "UA is Tobacco-Free" card.

If you are uncomfortable approaching someone directly, please feel free to work with your supervisor, department head, or someone responsible for the space in question to bring the policy to the person's attention.

You can also utilize the LiveSafe app to anonymously report smoking and tobacco use to UAPD. LiveSafe has a number of other useful features and can be found on the "Google Play" and "Apple" app stores.

- How is the new policy being publicized?

The policy has been through extensive public review, which was advertised via legal notices in the Arizona Daily Star. Signage is in place throughout campus. In addition, campus-wide memos, articles in University media outlets, and public service announcements are being used.