Analyzing Exposure, Use, and Policies Related to Tobacco Use on Campus for the Development of Comprehensive Tobacco Policies at Canadian Post-secondary Institutions
Canadians in their early twenties represent the highest prevalence of reported tobacco use among all age groups. With the majority of Canadian young adults accessing post-secondary education, post-secondary institutions can facilitate targeting of health promotion efforts to curb tobacco use among young adults. Effective targeting requires clear comprehensive campus tobacco policies. However, the development and implementation of comprehensive campus tobacco policies has been lacking among Canadian post-secondary institutions. As the first step towards the development of a comprehensive campus tobacco policy at the University of Guelph, an on-line survey of students, faculty and staff was conducted in November 2012. The objectives of this survey were two-fold: (1) Determine the current level of exposure to second-hand smoke on campus, the type and frequency of tobacco use, opinions on seven different tobacco policy options, and the level of awareness of current tobacco policies and programs and; (2) Determine if any associations between opinions on tobacco policy options and exposure to second-hand smoke and tobacco use existed. The results of this survey demonstrate that tobacco use is associated with opinions on tobacco policy options and that the level of awareness of tobacco policies and programs is relatively low and is not associated with tobacco use. This study represents one of the first studies to examine the association between tobacco use and support of policy options and awareness of tobacco policies and programs. As other post-secondary institutions develop comprehensive tobacco policies, these findings will serve as a comparison for other similar institutions.
KeywordsTobacco policy University Survey Policy awareness
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