By Andy Lau, KYCC Prevention Specialist

On Sept. 7, 2020, Orange Coast College (OCC), a community college in Orange County, implemented a new smoke- and tobacco-free policy on its campus. The new policy prohibited all tobacco- and smoking-related products on the OCC campus, including the parking lots and student housing.

In 2018, OCC created its Smoke and Tobacco-Free Task Force in response to receiving a letter grade “F” on the CYAN Smoke- and Tobacco-Free Policy Report Card. In a study conducted by OCC, one-third of students and one-third of the faculty mentioned that they faced immediate health effects from second-hand smoke on campus such as coughing or asthma attacks. The goal of the task force was to protect the health of students, faculty, and staff from tobacco-related harms by ultimately pushing for a non-smoking policy. Ultimately, a 100% smoke-free policy was successfully passed at OCC with the help of the OCC Smoke and Tobacco-Free Task Force and campus community support.

Hopefully, moving forward, OCC can develop a strategic plan in maintaining a 100% smoke-free campus as well as achieving a letter grade “A” from the CYAN Smoke- and Tobacco-Free Policy Report Card.