As a proud member of the “Eagle Family” I am comforted by the fact that the university has banned smoking in all dormitories as a public recognition of the dangers of second- hand smoke.
However, I feel it is time to echo the demands made in an article written by Ms. Erica Purkett called “Non-smokers at risk”, published in the Campus Echo on April 4, 2007.
The Student Coalition Against Tobacco (SCAT) believes that smoking within 25 feet of all building entrances at NCCU should be banned by the Board of Trustees to protect the health of the entire campus community.
This issue is very relevant to this campus, because each year 50,000 non-smokers lose their lives as a result of exposure to second-hand smoke.
Many people make the assumption that second-hand smoke is only harmful in-doors and that simply smoking outside eliminates the adverse health effects of second-hand smoke.
However, a new study on outdoor exposure to second-hand smoke shows that secondhand smoke does not just float away to some mystical wonderland.
Second-hand smoke actually concentrates and forms a cloud over the smoker that can span several feet.
Cigarette smoke is much heavier than normal breathing air because it contains 4,000 chemicals, 50 of which are carcinogens, so the particles of this smoke precipitate back down on the smoker and others in the vicinity.
Campus Echo readers can assist SCAT’s campaign by signing our petition on campus at various major events or filling out and returning the petition in this issue of the Echo.
A deep understanding of the dangers of second-smoke and how to protect oneself is one of those life skills.
Emily I. Nwakpuda