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Tacoma Community College » About TCC » News & Events » Newsroom » Tobacco and Smoke Free Policy FAQs

Tobacco and Smoke Free Policy FAQs

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)


When does the Tobacco and Smoke Free policy become effective? The Tobacco and Smoke Free policy goes into effect on September 21, 2015, the first day of fall quarter.

Why does Tacoma Community College (TCC) need this policy? TCC acknowledges the findings of the United States Surgeon General that tobacco in any form, active or passive, is a significant health hazard. The College further recognizes that the United States Environmental Protection Agency classifies environmental tobacco smoke as a Class A carcinogen. In light of these health risks, and in support of a safe and healthy learning/working environment, the College is adopting this new policy.

To whom does the policy apply? This policy applies to all employees, faculty, students, workers, visitors, and contract employees.

What does the College define as tobacco or tobacco products? Tobacco or tobacco products include cigarettes, e-cigarettes, cigars, pipes, clove cigarettes, vapes, and smokeless or spit tobacco, also known as “dip”, chew, or snuff.

Why are e-cigarettes or vapes included in the policy? E-cigarettes and vapes use liquid nicotine to create smoke or vapor, which is considered second-hand smoke and an environmental hazard.

Will we be able to smoke anywhere on the TCC campus? No. Once this policy goes into effect, you will not be allowed to smoke on college property, which includes parking lots.

Are there any exceptions to the Tobacco and Smoke Free policy? An exemption to this policy is allowed for college properties that are long-term leaseholds and occupied by community agencies that are not affiliated with the college, i.e. Pierce Transit, Tacoma Area Coalition for individuals with Disabilities (TACID), etc. 

What if I smoke in my car? You will be allowed to smoke in your car since that is your personal property. However, you will not be allowed to dispose of waste created by cigarettes butts or spit containers from chewing tobacco or snuff. You will need to leave waste products in your car and dispose of elsewhere when you leave the TCC campus.

What if I do smoke or use tobacco products on campus? If you violate the Tobacco and Smoke Free policy, Campus Public Safety may issue a verbal warning or citation. Citations carry a fine of $10 for each occurrence. Repeated offenses by students will be considered a violation of the Tacoma Community College Code of Student Conduct and may result in disciplinary action up to and including disciplinary suspension from the college. Employees will be reported to the Human Resources Office for further action.

Do I have the right to appeal a smoking fine? Yes, appeals must be filed in the Campus Public Safety Office in Building 14 within five (5) days of the citation.  After the appeal is filed, the violator will be notified of the decision within ten (10) business days by mail.

Where can I go to get help quitting? Beginning in the fall of 2015, students can visit the Counseling and Advising Center in Building 7 to get help and resources to assist with quitting. Employees have access to the following resources to assist with quitting the tobacco and smoking habit:

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