Smoke Free Workplace - TAFE Queensland

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Smoke Free Workplace

For the health and wellbeing of all our students, our people and visitors, TAFE Queensland will be smoke free from 1 July, 2018.

This decision aligns with TAFE Queensland's responsibility and desire to provide healthy and vibrant campuses for all and reflects evolving societal norms.

TAFE Queensland recognises that this policy position will present a personal challenge for some staff and students. TAFE Queensland acknowledges this and anticipates the policy commencement date of 1 July 2018 will allow an appropriate period of time for the communication and socialisation of the transition to smoke free campuses.

This period will provide an opportunity for staff and students to avail themselves of the quit smoking support options, details of which are provided in the Frequently Asked Questions.

If you have any questions regarding the transition, please contact your local Workplace Health & Safety representative on your campus. For more detailed information see TAFE Queensland's Smoke Free Policy.

Why are we moving towards smoke free?

Smoking still remains a significant cause of preventable death and disease in Australia. Every year in Queensland 3700 smokers die from smoking-related diseases.

By going smoke free, TAFE Queensland is supporting the health of our students, staff, contractors and visitors. There is clear evidence to show that smoke free environments increase the rate of quitting and reduce the number of people taking up smoking.

TAFE Queensland also has a legal responsibility to provide a safe workplace and to protect staff, students and visitors from the serious health risks associated with exposure to second-hand smoke.

We recognise that our staff, students and visitors have a personal choice to smoke, but we also recognise the right for staff and students who do not smoke to work and study in an environment free from tobacco smoke.

As of 1 July 2018, smoking is not permitted anywhere within TAFE Queensland land, buildings, vehicles, facilities and other property owned or leased by or under the control of the organisation.

The smoke free policy relies on a community collective approach rather than enforcement. This community collective approach, coupled with consistent managing and signage, will support our people, students and visitors to feel empowered to remind people of the move to smoke free enviromnments across our organisation.

The change in policy will apply to anyone who studies, works or visits TAFE Queensland premises.

Have other higher education providers gone smoke free?

We are not doing this alone. The smoke free policy being implemented at TAFE Queensland has been implemented at many other TAFE campuses across Australia. In Queensland, TAFE Queensland and all public universities are also being supported by the Queensland Government smoke free Higher Education and Training initiative to implement smoke free policies.

How is the smoke free higher education and training initiative supporting smoke free policy implementation?

The Department of Health is working with higher education and training organisations to provide advice and support to implement measures to reduce smoking, including the creation of smoke free environments. The smoke free higher education and training initiative is:

  • Supporting organisations to develop, implement and manage smoke free policies.
  • Providing resources and support to promote smoke free policies and encourage staff and students to quit smoking.
  • Providing free resources to support quitting, including online services and tailored counselling from Quitline.

Who does the new smoke free policy affect?

All staff, students, visitors, volunteers and contractors who come on to TAFE Queensland campuses will need to adhere to the smoke free policy. This also includes the general public walking through our campuses.

What is the definition of smoking?

Smoking is the inhalation and exhalation of the smoke of burning tobacco, herbs or drugs.

Smoking also refers to the use of electronic cigarettes or other devices. Examples include, but are not limited to electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes, e-cigars, vapour pens, or a personal vapour) are any product where there is a hand to mouth action and results in the expulsion of a vapour.

How is the policy being implemented?

Any staff, student or visitor who smokes on a TAFE Queensland campus from 1 July, may be approached by staff, students or visitors and reminded about our smoke free policy.

The success of this approach will depend on the thoughtfulness, consideration and cooperation of smokers and non-smokers. All students and staff share in the responsibility for helping TAFE Queensland campuses to be smoke free.

What should I do if I see someone smoking on campus after 1 July 2018?

Transitioning to a smoke free campus requires respect for others - both non-smokers and smokers. You are encouraged to respectfully and politely remind smokers that they must go off-campus if they wish to smoke. If you have a regular issue at a particular location, contact your local health and safety or facilities teams.

Where can I smoke?

Smoking is not permitted anywhere on TAFE Queensland campuses and sites. This includes all TAFE Queensland fleet vehicles, and all other motor vehicles while on campus.

Smokers will need to select an area outside the campus boundary to smoke. When choosing to leave the campus to smoke please ensure this location is safe and is well-lit at night. Also consider neighbouring properties and the environment when choosing to smoke off campus by using butt bins supplied.

Is there support to help quit smoking?

Quitting smoking isn't easy, but with the right tools and support, quitting smoking is possible and can be one of the most life-changing achievements a person can make.

TAFE Queensland encourages smokers to reduce or quit smoking and is providing support for staff and students who want to quit smoking. TAFE Queensland staff and students can access a free quit smoking support program that includes counselling sessions (delivered by the Quitline service) combined with nicotine replacement therapy, such as patches, gum and lozenges.

For further information please visit the Quitline FAQs and complete a Quitline Registration Form.

Other organisations or Apps you might like to access for additional information and services are:

What are the current tobacco laws in Queensland?

Laws in Queensland include smoking bans for indoor and outdoor public places, as well as tough restrictions on the retail advertising, display and promotion of tobacco products.

These laws create a culture that:

  • reduces exposure to second-hand smoke
  • supports smokers trying to quit
  • discourages young people from taking up the habit.

Research shows that young people are much less likely to take up smoking if their schools, homes and recreation areas are no-smoking areas. Efforts to help adults to quit smoking and reducing exposure to smoking in public places also sends a positive message to young people about not smoking.

Find out more about the tobacco laws in Queensland, including the requirements for food and drink businesses, outdoor public areas and the rules about tobacco sales.

Additional information

Healthier. Happier. Workplaces

Parliamentary Committee Report - "Inquiry into smoking and tobacco use at universities, technical and further education facilities, and registered training organisations". Report no 12. Education, Tourism, Innovation and Small Business Committee April 2016.