Rhode Island - Tobacco-Free Environments: Policy or Plan Requirements

Policy Or Plan Requirements
Policy Type: 

State law prohibits any smoking or use of tobacco products on school grounds when students are present and/or requires districts to adopt tobacco-free school policies that address some CDC components.

Rhode Island General Laws § 23-20.9-5. Regulation of smoking in schools.

(a) The governing body of each school in Rhode Island shall be responsible for the development of enforcement procedures to prohibit tobacco product usage by any person utilizing school facilities. All facilities used by a school, whether owned, leased or rented, shall be subject to the provisions of this chapter. Enforcement procedures shall be promulgated and conspicuously posted in each building.
(b) This chapter shall not modify, or be used as a basis for modifying school policies or regulations in effect prior to the passage of this chapter if the existing policies or regulations prohibit tobacco product usage in the school.
(c) All school areas where tobacco product usage is prohibited shall be clearly marked with "nonsmoking area" signs with bold block lettering at least three inches (3") high stating "Tobacco-Free School -- Tobacco Use Prohibited". There shall be at least one "nonsmoking area" sign, in conformance with the above, at every building entrance and in other areas as designated by the governing body. Signs shall also be posted in every school bus and every school vehicle. Signs as detailed above shall be provided, without charge, by the department of health.

Rhode Island General Laws § 23-20.9-3. Legislative intent – Purpose.

As tobacco now kills over four hundred and thirty-four thousand (434,000) people in the United States each year, it is the intent of this health legislation to eliminate the exposure of children attending school, and other persons working in schools, to the school-site health hazard of tobacco smoke and other tobacco product usage. It is the intent of this health legislation to protect the health and welfare of children in school by eliminating the exposure of children in school to the significant, life-threatening health hazard of tobacco smoke. It is the intent of this health legislation to create a tobacco-free school environment in Rhode Island.

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