QTND 30: Smoking on the Ramp

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Is the "No Smoking on the Ramp" policy obsolete? It's funny because, to me, the signs clearly indicate that there is to be NO SMOKING. People complain that smokers have no rights, but I refuse to let other people's vices destroy my lungs.

—Enforce the Policy!

Dear ETP,
We do have a stated policy about smoking on the ramp. It basically says that smoking there is not allowed, except when it's raining or snowing. When the weather is bad like that, we do allow smoking further down on the ramp — away from the doors, but still underneath the protection of the scholar studies.

The library has put up signs that make our policy about not smoking there clear. Our staff also remind people not to smoke on the ramp whenever we see that happening. At the same time, it's not realistic to think that our staff will be going in and out of the building all the time, especially at night. That limits us in terms of when we can remind people about the policy.

We have thought about a stricter enforcement, involving judicial proceedings and fines — similar to what we do for food violations in the library building. But our staff are reluctant to do that.

So where does this leave things? Is this a hopeless cause? Not really. You — and everyone who uses the ramp — are well within your rights to tell smokers who violate the policy that you don't want to be exposed to smoke and that you would like them to leave the ramp. If that's done in a polite and respectful way by everyone who sees violations, then I think we'll get good cooperation with the policy.

—RAE 11/10/95

We've now created a smoking area under the ramp that provides shelter for smokers during bad weather. So our policy has now been revised. No smoking on the ramp now applies at all times.

—RAE 10/11/96

Last updated:
October 06, 2012