Smokeless outside SURC

Kyle Fenton, Staff Reporter

The current Student Government didn’t have a whole lot to say about the tobacco-free zones that were created outside the SURC entrances, considering it was the previous year’s Student Government that enacted the changes.

Yosef Gamble, president of the ASCWU Student Government, said student surveys played a big part in the decision-making process.

“Based on student input, the Student government concluded that they wanted to pursue smoke-free areas around the SURC,” Gamble said.

“I think it’s awesome, I like being able to walk places and breathe comfortably,” said Abigail Kostelecky, a junior majoring in communication studies, while enjoying one of the tobacco free patios around a picnic table with friends.

The multitude of signs posted on all entrances and exits of the SURC far surpass the 25-foot no smoking rule that was voted into Washington State law on Nov 8, 2005. The east and west patios have signs that say it is a tobacco free area over 100 feet away from any door.

SET BACK - The tobacco-free zones have been pushed back to 100 feet from the SURC.
Riley Elliott
SET BACK – The tobacco-free zones have been pushed back to 100 feet from the SURC.

Scott Adolphson, graduate student for resource management had feelings towards the matter.

“It seems to be the trend, smokers being evil or whatever. It doesn’t bother me though, I am used to being ostracized for being a smoker,” Adolphson said.

Michael Shelley, freshman, and his friend Rockey, film and video studies freshmen, were smoking in a far corner of the East parking lot when approached.

“Modern media has over dramatized second hand smoking,” Shelley said, while smoking in the SURC parking lot with two friends.

One of the friends spoke up after Shelley said his piece.

“It’s almost as if smokers are being seen as second class citizens, although it is a blessing and a curse at the same time,” Rockey said.

In response to smokers not having a covered area Robert Lane, vice president of Student Life and Facilities said that “it’s really inconvenient for smokers. I am hoping this year we can come up with something better,”

Something better may be a covered area outside the non-smoking section so that they have some place to smoke when it’s raining, according to Lane.

The student government is not planning on expanding the tobacco-free areas beyond the SURC entrances.