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at UC Merced

General FAQ

Don’t I have a right to smoke or use tobacco products on campus?

Using tobacco is a personal choice, not a constitutional right. There is no constitutional right to smoke. In addition, prohibiting smoking and the use of tobacco products on campus preserves everyone’s right to breathe clean, smoke-free air while allowing adults who smoke and use tobacco products to continue to do so off campus. This decision supports the rights and privileges of both smokers and nonsmokers alike.

A smoke/tobacco-free policy will force students, faculty and staff to leave campus to smoke. What about the personal safety of these individuals, especially in the early morning or evening when it is dark?

UC encourages all individuals to be mindful of their personal safety while on or off campus. Medications such as the nicotine patch, gum, lozenge, nasal spray or inhaler are options that can be considered to meet nicotine needs without leaving campus.

If I choose to continue to smoke or use tobacco and do not have enough time to step off campus to smoke what am I supposed to do?

The University is aware that nicotine is a highly addictive drug and simply waiting until lunchtime or after work will be difficult for some. We encourage the use of nicotine replacement products such as gum or lozenges for times when it is inconvenient to smoke. Please work with your health care provider to determine the appropriate product.


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