On January 8th, Huntington Memorial Library in Oneonta, NY adopted a new 100% Tobacco-Free Outdoor policy for their property, including the adjacent library owned park. This policy prohibits the use of all tobacco products including electronic cigarettes and vaping. Tobacco products are defined as any product made or derived from tobacco, or which contains nicotine. Electronic cigarettes are defined as any electronic device that, when activated, produces an aerosol that may be inhaled, whether or not the aerosol contains nicotine, such as e-cigarettes and vape pens.

“The Library Board and Director support the tobacco-free initiatives in local parks and buildings,” said Tina Winstead, Director of Huntington Memorial Library. “We’re happy to support the health of all since the Huntington Park is used by so many including the young and old, and neighbors and tourists.”

“Educating local businesses and organizations on the dangers of secondhand smoke and the importance of adopting healthy, tobacco-free outdoor policies is one of our primary initiatives to help build and support the tobacco-free norm. Tobacco-Free Communities |Delaware, Otsego & Schoharie can provide technical assistance for policy development and provides free signage for any business or organization interested in adopting tobacco-free grounds,” said Jennifer Hill, Community Engagement Coordinator for Tobacco Free Communities |Delaware, Otsego & Schoharie.

New York State Public Health Law prohibits tobacco product use within one hundred feet of the entrances, exits or outdoor areas of any public or association library. This policy expands the public health law provision to also prohibit the use of electronic cigarettes, applying to all Huntington Memorial Library employees, contractors and visitors. The library desires to provide a healthy, comfortable, and safe working environment for employees, vendors and visitors. The goal of this tobacco-free policy is to create a healthy and respectful environment by reducing exposure to secondhand smoke and toxins emitted by electronic cigarettes, and to promote tobacco cessation.