In the news

Sharon Springs Library Adopts Tobacco-Free Policy

The Sharon Springs Free Library recently adopted a tobacco-free policy to help create a healthier community. The library is the fourth public library in Schoharie County who are all members of the Mohawk Valley Library System to go tobacco-free. The library board of trustees recognized that the library is an important community and cultural center and the use of tobacco products on library property negatively affects everyone who spends time at the library’s facilities. Effective November 1, the library now prohibits the use of any manufactured product containing tobacco or nicotine including but not limited to cigarettes, cigars, pipe tobacco, snuff, chewing tobacco, dipping tobacco, bidis, snus, dissolvable tobacco products and electronic nicotine devices (ENDS) like electronic cigarettes.

According to Lora Newell, board president, “We are more than just books, computers and Wi-Fi. The library hosts a variety of community meetings and programs where youth and adults can explore, interact and imagine. We have seen increased use of both our community room and meeting room at the library. The library’s new tobacco-free policy will protect people from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke and aerosol exposure, eliminate tobacco litter and promote our facility as a healthy and safe place for the community to use.”

Staff from Advancing Tobacco Free Communities in Delaware, Otsego and Schoharie Counties (ATFC-DOS) met with members of library board of trustees in September and shared the benefits of tobacco-free areas. ATFC-DOS provided technical assistance and tobacco-free signage that will be posted on the library building and grounds. Deyanira Cisneros, Community Engagement Coordinator with ATFC-DOS and Linda Wegner, Program Director for ATFC-DOS officially presented the tobacco-free signage to library trustees at their meeting on November 30.

The New York State Department of Health, Bureau of Tobacco Control funds ATFC-DOS to educate the community and decision makers, mobilize community members around the problems that tobacco addiction causes in local communities, and help decision makers understand the types of  choices that they have to address these problems. ATFC-DOS is part of the Research Foundation of SUNY at SUNY Cobleskill.