Johns Hopkins School of Public Health launches tobacco-free initiative

The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health is now a tobacco-free campus.

In launching the Tobacco-Free Campus Initiative last week, the school prohibits the use of any tobacco product—not just cigarettes—in all buildings, facilities, and vehicles. The initiative also forbids e-cigarettes and discourages the use of tobacco products on all outdoor campus grounds.

"As a school of public health we are dedicated to promoting the well-being of the global community," says Michael J. Klag, , dean of the school. "With the Tobacco-Free Campus Initiative, we are taking steps to also promote our own health as well."

Tobacco is the leading cause of preventable deaths, responsible for about one in five deaths annually in the U.S.—more than HIV, illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injury, suicide, and murder combined. It is estimated that six million youth alive today will eventually die prematurely from smoking.

Deterring the use of tobacco in all forms is crucial to protecting the health of the students and workforce of the JHSPH community, initiative organizers say. By keeping out all tobacco products, the initiative ensures that the school doesn't unintentionally encourage or reinforce tobacco addiction among students, faculty, and staff.

As part of the initiative, the school will promote the use of smoking cessation services and resources; such services are included as part of student and employee health insurance plans.