The Norman Transcript

Local news

June 27, 2013

MNTC campus to go tobacco-free

NORMAN — Moore Norman Technology Center will join a rapidly growing list of education facilities across the United States that support and have in place a tobacco-free campus policy.

Starting July 1, all high school and adult students, clients, conference attendees, visitors, vendors, staff and administration on MNTC’s Franklin Road Campus, South Penn Campus or the Business Development Center are prohibited from using a tobacco-based product of any kind on campus grounds or its extended property. This new policy also extends to include simulated tobacco products as a prohibited item.

Smoking has been banned inside MNTC’s buildings for many years, but the adoption of this new policy includes the extended campus grounds and MNTC will remove all dedicated smoking areas from its properties.

MNTC’s school board is dedicated to providing a healthy, comfortable and productive environment for staff, students and citizens. As a concern for the health of all who attend classes, conferences or training, or who work or are visitors to any MNTC campuses, the board will discourage the use of tobacco products.

“A policy like this promotes an overall healthier workplace; smoking and tobacco negatively affects not only the people using the products but also our students and staff. As an Oklahoma Certified Healthy Business, we want to support Gov. Fallin’s effort for a healthier Oklahoma, and that includes doing what we can to provide a healthy work place and environment for everyone,” said Nunu Ruttman, MNTC HR benefits and training specialist.

In Fallin’s 2013 State of the State Address, she proposed the continual development of an “Oklahoma Plan” that focuses on improving the health of citizens, lowering the frequency of preventable illnesses like diabetes and heart disease, and improving access to quality and affordable health care.

“Any plan to improve the health of Oklahomans must address the state’s number one killer: tobacco. The use of tobacco products costs Oklahomans more than $2 billion in health care costs and lost work force productivity annually,” Fallin said. “Almost 6,000 Oklahomans die each year due to smoking-related illnesses. That includes both of my parents.

“My father died from a smoking-related illness when he was younger than I am today. This year, I am supporting a proposal to restore local control to cities and towns regarding tobacco use in public places. The implications for health can be enormous.”

To read MNTC’s new policy on being a tobacco-free campus starting July 1, visit mntechnology.com.

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