OXFORD, MS (abc24.com) - They're terminating tobacco. Starting this fall, if you light up at Ole Miss prepare to pay the price. The campus is going smoke free.
The university says the change will protect everyone's health.
Right now, smokers can light up anywhere they want outside Ole Miss buildings. That's all going to change August 1st.
"We don't want to be rude to people. Basically this is an effort to promote their health," says Associate Provost Maurice Eftink.
Students, faculty, visitors - anyone who steps foot on campus won't be allowed to smoke.
"Not only because cigarettes are carcinogens, but an inner irritant and there's the second hand smoke issue," Eftink says.
Students are the ones who first asked for the ban over a year ago. Ole Miss has been modeling its policy after similar ones at universities around the country.
"We have to be realistic about enforcing this. It's going to roll out over period of time." Eftink says they'll put signs, create a website and campus police will begin issuing warnings August 1st.
In January, the warnings become $25 fines given to anyone caught smoking.
"$25 dollars, I don't think they want to pay that right now. It's pretty hard as it is," says Darone Bailey, an Ole Miss student.
"For all the persons who don't smoke, it's a good really thing," says Florian Thinard, who's a student and a smoker. "I've been smoking since I was 15. I think it's time to stop."
"The way I look at it if we can decrease the number of people who are lifelong smokers, we've done a great service to them," adds Eftink.
"It's forbidden in many, many places and it's going to increase so we have to get used to this," Thinard says.
For smokers dreading this change, the ban does not apply to smokeless tobacco since that only affects the person who's using it.