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City of Glasgow College - befree.scot

City of Glasgow College Case Study

The City of Glasgow College has endorsed Scotland’s Charter for a Tobacco-free Generation to reduce the harm caused by smoking and pave the way to a generation free of tobacco by 2034.

The City of Glasgow College partnered with Quit Your Way smoking cessation services and ASH Scotland to create a tobacco-free policy for their campus and protect their students from the harms of tobacco.

As the first college in Scotland to achieve 5 stars in the Healthy Body Healthy Mind Awards, City of Glasgow College prioritises the health of their students and staff through multiple events and policies on campus.

They have developed a clear policy designating the campus as smoke-free and incorporated tobacco awareness education into both new and existing events. Through their partnerships the City of Glasgow College hopes to support the Scottish Government’s target of a tobacco-free generation by 2034.

Partnerships:

Staff at the college have been instrumental in providing smoke-free services and developing policies that align with ASH Scotland’s Tobacco-free Charter. This, along with improved staff training on tobacco policies and cessation using ASH Scotland’s eLearning has led to staff being able to effectively help foster a smoke-free community.

Local smoking cessation practitioners have helped raise awareness about new policies and given support to staff and students who wish to quit. Between March and June 2018 the college featured stop smoking support and information was offered weekly on campus so that it was easily visible and accessible to students.

In addition, the #befreeachievemore campaign highlighting the benefits of not smoking and the #NotaFavour campaign informing about the issue of adults providing or purchasing cigarettes for underage people have been promoted on the college Instagram, Twitter and Facebook pages.

Overall, the joint efforts of the college, alongside ASH Scotland and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde have helped the college progress toward a healthier campus free from the harms of tobacco.

40% of current student smokers had started before the age of 16 and 57% of them would like to quit as they view smoking as a barrier to living a healthy lifestyle.

Smoke Free Campus Policy:

Both the Riverside and City campuses of City of Glasgow College are now completely smoke-free in all buildings, grounds and walkways. They have placed ‘No Smoking’ signs with the Quit Your Way helpline number and the Tobacco-free Generation logo around campus and in areas where people tend to congregate to smoke.

Smoke-free campus policies have been extended into off campus events sponsored by the college, demonstrating the commitment across the college to create a healthier learning experience for all.

Rather than framing the new smoke-free campus policy as a judgement against smokers, the college has done an exceptional job at accepting everyone’s right to make their own decisions about smoking. With this said, they have included all students in the conversation about smoking and framed the new policy in a positive light as a way to protect the right of all students to an environment free from the harms of second-hand smoke.

Events:

The City of Glasgow College has sponsored events focused at promoting the college’s commitment to creating a smoke-free campus.

The Fairtrade Football Tournament was hosted by the Students Association and Student Engagement Team. This event is held annually but in 2018 it was used as an opportunity to promote the new smoke-free policy. The entire event was smoke-free and smoking cessation information was made available for students and staff. The rules were enforced by students and were explained as a way to ensure a smoke-free environment for all.

No-smoking policies that are enforced by peers are examples of how the college is working to create a culture where tobacco is out of sight, out of mind and out of fashion. Furthermore, a social media campaign featured athletes posing for a photo before a match declaring that they were smoke-free. These student athletes serve as role models to the rest of the student body championing a smoke-free lifestyle.

For No Smoking Day, students were asked to trade in a cigarette for a hot drink and cake. Information on smoking cessation services were delivered by staff members in student areas and near exits. By the end of the day 70 students had traded in cigarettes and filled out a survey which has given the college a better understanding of the smoking population among students.

They found that 40% of current student smokers had started before the age of 16 and 57% of them would like to quit as they view smoking as a barrier to living a healthy lifestyle. These statistics show that smoking is an issue across campus and the effort to create a smoke free generation by the City of Glasgow College alongside ASH Scotland is of great importance.

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