ASU students protest smoking and tobacco ban that would affect all property owned by the university

TEMPE, AZ - Arizona State University students will protest a smoking/tobacco ban Wednesday morning. Students for Liberty, a group that organized the rally, says the ban infringes on an individual's right to choose.

The protest is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Memorial Union on the Tempe campus. Students are asked to stop by and sign a petition against the tobacco ban. 

Starting in August 2013, tobacco use will not be allowed on property owned by ASU. This will impact both the Tempe and Phoenix campuses, research facilities, university-owned housing, stadium events and tailgate gatherings at ASU.

The policy would apply to students, staff, and visitors. Currently, smoking and tobacco use is allowed at least 25 feet away from building entrances. 

ASU says the decision was made to promote health and wellness. The school will join more than 800 other colleges around the country that have implemented a 100 percent smoking ban. 

Carlos Alfaro, with Students for Liberty, says the group doesn't deny that smoking is bad for a person's health, but argues that a person should be able to make his or her own choices. Alfaro calls this a "nanny law" and says it is extreme.

Students for Liberty are petitioning for designated smoking areas instead of a 100 percent ban.

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