Model Smoke-Free and Tobacco-Free Policies

DHEC's Division of Tobacco Prevention and Control staff works to build statewide partnerships resulting in initiatives that reduce people's exposure to second-hand smoke. Tobacco-free and smoke-free settings in South Carolina currently include schools, hospitals, faith-based settings, work-sites, colleges/universities, and recreation facilities.


Smoke-free policies often apply to combustible tobacco products ONLY and may allow designated smoking areas, may allow alternative nicotine products such as e-cigarettes/vapes, or provide other exemptions.

Tobacco-free policies prohibit the use of all tobacco containing or tobacco-derived products, smokeless tobacco (snuff, chewing tobacco, dip, snus), and alternative nicotine products such as e-cigarettes.  Tobacco-free policies apply to everyone, in all setting locations, at all times (with no exemptions).  It does not apply to Nicotine Replacement Therapy products (gum, patch, lozenge, inhaler), which help tobacco users with cessation efforts.
 

Colleges and Universities

Prior to more comprehensive efforts, many colleges and universities in South Carolina adopted smoke-free policies.  Smoke-free campuses may have designated smoking areas, may allow smoking at sports venues or have other exemptions in their policy.  While the majority of educational institutions are implementing tobacco-free policies, there are still a few implementing the less restrictive smoke-free policy.

American Nonsmokers' Rights Foundation provides an updated listing by state of colleges and universities with smoke-free and tobacco-free policies.  

Tobacco- Free Schools

Nicotine dependency and other tobacco-related health risks are a threat to SC youth.  Data shows that more than 85% of adult smokers began using tobacco before the age of 18 and that 2,800 kids in the state become regular smokers each year.  An estimated 103,000 kids in SC younger than age 18 will die prematurely from a smoking-related disease and many more will live with a tobacco-related illness.  

 

Faith-Based Organizations

Historically, faith-based organizations implemented smoke-free policies for their events and locations.  A desire for more specific language led to the adoption of what was then referred to as "tobacco-free" policy.  However, it must be noted that tobacco-free policies implemented by the faith community do not meet the definition of "tobacco-free".  Best practices require a more comprehensive tobacco-free policy, but it is up to each organization to determine the extent of the policy adopted.  

Health Care Facilities

Currently, tobacco-free policy for this setting does not prohibit the use of e-cigarettes or other alternative nicotine products.

 

Recreational Settings

Currently, tobacco-free policy for this setting does not prohibit the use of e-cigarettes or other alternative nicotine products.

Work-sites

Many work-sites are covered under smoke-free policies implemented by the municipality or county in which they are located.  These policies vary and often only apply to public smoking. Best practices require a more comprehensive tobacco-free policy, but it is up to each municipality to determine the extent of the policy adopted.

Community Organizations

 
The following policy can be used to create a 100% tobacco-free environment in a community setting.  This policy is inclusive of all commercial tobacco products, including e-cigarettes/vapes.  
 
 
 

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