ECU Smoke-Free is a proactive initiative by the University to provide a safer, healthier place to work and study. The University developed a smoke-free University policy and amended its By-Laws to prohibit smoking on ECU grounds in January 2012.
There has been some feedback from staff and students wanting to know how the policy is managed and who manages the process. It is extremely important that these issues are managed with sensitivity and consistency across all campuses.
The key elements when addressing the issue are:
The following suggestions outline the different approaches which staff, students and managers may wish to use when dealing with non-compliance.
This can be a particularly sensitive or awkward issue when you are interacting with people that share your work area.
Always assume that the person smoking is not aware of the change. Bring to their attention in a friendly manner that ECU is now smoke-free. If you see a colleague smoking, remind them politely that ECU campuses are now smoke-free.
The first time this happens you may want to initiate a casual conversation. Making the assumption that the person may not be aware of the initiative, provide them with the information that:
If the situation continues you should raise your concerns with your line manager. Your HR account manager can also provide advice on the options available.
To establish some clear boundaries and expectations from the beginning of 2012:
The line manager could therefore choose to circulate an email to your team at the beginning of the year reminding them that ECU is now smoke-free.
The University's Code of Conduct requires all students and staff to comply with University Statutes, Rules and Policies. Non-compliance with the Smoke-Free Policy is therefore to be dealt with in the same way you would manage any other policy breach.
For more assistance, and guidance on how to manage specific situations, speak to you HR account manager.
If you have already tried the above advice, including having a casual conversation, mentioning cessation programs and referring them to the smoke-free website and they have not changed their behaviour, you may need to consider further action.
Inform the person that you are aware that they are continuing to smoke on campus and that they are in contravention of the University By-laws and smoke-free policy.
Should this continue you should raise your concerns with your line manager. Your HR account manager can also provide advice on the options available.
Because staff can no longer smoke on campus this does not give smokers permission to spend extended periods of time off campus on smoke breaks. Absence from the workplace is a matter for the line manager to address.
As line manager/supervisor it is recommended that this be pointed out to the person as soon as you notice the behaviour. Articulate your expectation around acceptable tea breaks and be sure that the same expectation applies to everyone.
For more assistance, speak to you HR account manager.
The University Council has amended the By-laws and the Vice-Chancellor has approved the Smoke-Free ECU Policy to create the legislative and policy framework for a smoke-free ECU. Students and staff are required to abide by the By-Laws and all policies.
However, imposing the penalties in the By-Laws or invoking the breach provisions in the Code of Conduct are considered to be the last resort.
As line manager/supervisor, if you feel you have done everything you can and have not been successful, have a conversation with your HR account manager on further options.
Always assume that the person smoking is not aware of the change. Bring to their attention in a friendly manner that ECU campuses are now smoke-free.
Students are expected to comply with University By-Laws and policies. If a student is seen smoking by an officer authorised under the By-Laws an infringement notice may be issued.
Further information on ECU Smoke-Free can be found here.
Please leave a comment about your rating so we can better understand how we might improve the page.