Reported support for the University of Wollongong’s smoke-free policy has been questioned and members of the Wollongong Undergraduate Student Association (WUSA) have called for it to be reviewed.
The draft policy, which endorses a smoking ban on campus for everywhere except Uni Bar, received around 80 responses during its consultation period (December 15, 2015 – January 15, 2016). Seventy-eight per cent of responses, which were collected via SOLS message, supported the ban.
WUSA President Sam Tedeschi said the survey response was not representative of the university’s 30,000 students.
Smoke-Free Policy Working Group student representative Ine Seljeseth said a ban would benefit the health of staff and students.
“It’s about taking that step about providing a healthier environment,” she said.
Since 2013, Ms Seljeseth said she has gained around 800 signatures in support of the ban. Mr Tedeschi said many issues had not been considered, including the safety of students who will need to leave campus to smoke.
WUSA said there should be designated smoking areas instead of a ban.
The smoking ban is expected to begin July 1.