U of T smoke-free policy: frequently asked questions
The health impacts of smoking and second-hand smoke are well documented. Making campuses smoke-free is a growing trend. At least 65 Canadian universities and colleges are now smoke-free according to the Canadian Cancer Society. The new policy is consistent with the university’s goal to create a healthy campus environment.
For purposes of this policy, the word “smoking” includes the following: smoking or holding lighted tobacco or cannabis, and use of an electronic cigarette or other vaping device. Where smoking is a feature of Indigenous ceremonial activities, the policy will accommodate such uses in accordance with applicable law. This policy is subject to the duty to accommodate persons with disabilities in accordance with the Human Rights Code of Ontario.
This policy applies to all individuals present on University of Toronto property at any time and for any purposes, including employees, students, contractors, volunteers and visitors.
This policy applies to all property owned by U of T, including but not limited to the St. George, Mississauga and Scarborough campuses.
Federated colleges on St. George Campus (St. Michael’s College, Trinity College and Victoria College) and theological colleges (Wycliffe College, Knox College and Regis College) are also moving towards a smoke-free environment.
Where can I smoke?
When the policy is in effect, you must do so off U of T property or in designated smoking areas that have been created under the transitional provisions of the policy.
On the St. George Campus, smoking is permitted on city-owned property, which includes many streets and sidewalks on and adjacent to campus.
The following streets are owned by the university and therefore, smoking is not permitted, including but not limited to:
- Hart House Circle
- King’s College Circle
- King’s College Road
- Classic Avenue
- Galbraith Road
- Bancroft Avenue
- Willcocks Street (between St. George and Huron)
- Tower Road
As of Jan. 1, 2019, all smoking and vaping will be prohibited on U of T property, except to the extent that designated smoking areas are developed by any campus during a transitional basis; the prohibition includes inside or outside vehicles while parked on university property.
All students and employees are required to abide by applicable laws, policies and guidelines, including the Fitness for Work Guideline for employees, and the Code of Student Conduct. These documents do not themselves necessarily prohibit use of cannabis or tobacco off-campus, but deal with behaviour on campus involving or resulting from use of tobacco and cannabis.
The safety of our students is a top priority. We will work with leaders in our student and residence communities to address safety concerns that might arise as a result of this new policy. Safety will also be considered as our three campuses develop designated smoking areas for the transition period.
Class times will not be adjusted.
The university will focus on educating members of the community about the policy and the risks of smoke and second-hand smoke, and will be providing support for students and employees who wish to stop smoking through smoking-cessation programs.
Additional training will be provided to Campus Police on expectations for enforcement and approaching/engaging with community members who are in violation of the smoke-free campus policy.
Enforcement measures will depend on the individual’s relationship with the university, the nature of the infraction, and the place in which it occurred.
If you notice a violation, you can contact the applicable Campus Police unit at the following:
- St. George Campus 8-2222 or 416-978-2222
- University of Toronto Scarborough 416-287-7398
- University of Toronto Mississauga 905-828-5200
The University of Toronto offers a number of resources to support students, faculty and staff in quitting smoking and vaping.
Faculty and staff:
- Cessation programs and support are available through Green Shield for employees who are registered in an eligible benefits program.
- Homewood Health
- e-course “Stop Smoking: Get Your Life Back”
- Homewood EFAP offers addiction counselling through their counselling services
- Homewood EFAP offers smoking-cessation coaching “Life Smart Coaching - Smoking-Cessation Program”
- Homewood Health 1 hour on-site group session
Students: Student health services provide many supports for reducing or quitting tobacco use, including:
- Meeting with a health care professional to discuss treatment options, resources and tools
- Accessing free nicotine replacement therapy (i.e., nicotine gum and patch) or exploring other prescription quit aids
- Referrals to Smokers Helpline
For more information or to book an appointment, students can contact their local student health service:
Online supports: Leave The Pack Behind is an online, age-tailored support that provides information, quit contests, and free nicotine replacement therapy for young adults.
Off-campus resources: CAMH offers smoking cessation resources at its Nicotine Dependence Clinics (two locations near downtown Toronto).