Because Mitchell Hamline School of Law is committed to providing a safe and healthy working and learning environment for the students, faculty, and staff on its campus, it hereby adopts the following smoke-free and commercial tobacco-free policy. Mitchell Hamline finds and declares that the purposes of this policy are to: protect the public health and welfare by prohibiting smoking and the use of commercial tobacco products on the Mitchell Hamline campus; and encourage a healthier, more productive learning environment for all members of our campus community.
Sacred traditional tobacco use for prayer, ceremony, and memorial is allowed, promoted, and supported by Mitchell Hamline. (See Section 4. Exceptions below.)
“Electronic smoking device” means any device that may be used to deliver any aerosolized or vaporized substance to the person inhaling from the device, including, but not limited to, an e-cigarette, e-cigar, e-pipe, vape pen, or e-hookah.
- inhaling, exhaling, or burning, any commercial tobacco, nicotine, marijuana, or plant product, whether natural or synthetic;
- carrying any lighted, heated, or activated commercial tobacco, nicotine, marijuana, or plant product, whether natural or synthetic, intended for inhalation; or
- using an electronic smoking device.
“Commercial tobacco product” means:
- any product containing, made of, or derived from tobacco or nicotine that is intended for human consumption or is likely to be consumed, whether inhaled, absorbed, or ingested by any other means, including but not limited to, a cigarette, a cigar, pipe tobacco, chewing tobacco, snuff, or snus;
- any electronic smoking device and any substances that may be aerosolized or vaporized by such device, whether or not the substance contains nicotine; or
- any component, part, or accessory of 1) or 2), whether or not any of these contains tobacco or nicotine, including but not limited to filters, rolling papers, blunt or hemp wraps, hookahs, and pipes.
“Commercial tobacco product” does not mean drugs, devices, or combination products authorized for sale by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, as those terms are defined in the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.
B. Smoking and Commercial Tobacco Use Prohibited on Mitchell Hamline Campus and at Mitchell Hamline-Sponsored Events.
- Smoking and the use of commercial tobacco products and electronic delivery devices is prohibited both indoors and outdoors in all Mitchell Hamline campus buildings and on all Mitchell Hamline grounds, including all parking lots, and within private vehicles on Mitchell Hamline grounds.
- This policy applies to all Mitchell Hamline facilities, property, and vehicles, owned or leased, regardless of location, and at all Mitchell Hamline-sponsored events.
- This policy applies to all students, faculty, staff, and other persons on campus, regardless of the purpose for their visit.
- This policy applies to Mitchell Hamline-sponsored classes, events, or activities, including those hosted remotely.
C. Promotion and Sale of Smoking and Commercial Tobacco Products Prohibited
- No commercial tobacco-related advertising or sponsorship shall be permitted on Mitchell Hamline grounds, at Mitchell Hamline-sponsored events, or in publications/internet content produced by Mitchell Hamline. For the purposes of this policy, “commercial tobacco-related” applies to the use of a commercial tobacco brand or corporate name, trademark, logo, symbol, or motto, selling message, recognizable pattern or colors, or any other indicia of product identical to or similar to, or identifiable with, those used for any brand of commercial tobacco products or company which manufactures commercial tobacco products, or smoking products.
- No commercial tobacco products shall be sold or distributed as samples on Mitchell Hamline campus.
- No commercial tobacco products shall be used, displayed, or promoted on Mitchell Hamline-hosted online remote classes, events, or activities.
- It is not a violation of this policy to use tobacco as part of an Indigenous practice or a lawfully recognized religious, spiritual, or cultural ceremony or practice—sacred traditional tobacco use for prayer, ceremony, and memorial is allowed, promoted, and supported. For any concerns on the smudging policy, please contact the Director of the Native American Law and Sovereignty Institute. This exception is in accordance with the American Indian Religious Freedom Act, 42 U.S.C. sections 1996 and 1996a and the Minnesota Clean Indoor Air Act, MS 144.4167 which allows for the use of tobacco products for specific activities used in connection with the practice of cultural activities by Indigenous communities.
- It shall not be a violation of this policy for tobacco products to be included in an instructional or work-related activity if the activity does not include smoking, chewing, or otherwise ingesting the product. Handling nicotine products should only be undertaken with appropriate safety precautions to avoid inadvertent poisoning through dermal contact or otherwise.
E. Dissemination of Policy; Signage
Copies of this policy shall be distributed to all faculty, staff, and students. Information about the policy and how to comply with it shall also be posted on the Mitchell Hamline website. Announcements concerning the policy and any changes to it shall be printed in campus publications and posted on the Mitchell Hamline website to ensure that everyone fully understands the policy. Signs prohibiting smoking and the use of commercial tobacco products shall be posted at all points of entry to the Mitchell Hamline campus (i.e., at parking lot entrances and locations where private walkways meet sidewalks) and at all Mitchell Hamline building entrances. No ashtrays shall be provided at any location on campus.
F. Transition Period
This policy is being announced prior to its implementation in order to give people who use commercial tobacco products or other smoking products time to adapt to its restrictions and to facilitate a smooth transition to a commercial tobacco-free environment. Smoking cessation resources shall be made available to assist and encourage individuals who wish to quit smoking. Questions and problems regarding this policy should be handled through existing departmental administrative channels and administrative procedures.
G. Enforcement of Policy
The success of this policy depends upon the thoughtfulness, consideration, and cooperation of the whole Mitchell Hamline community. All individuals on school premises, including students, staff, faculty, and visitors are responsible for adhering to and enforcing this policy. Members of the Mitchell Hamline are encouraged to communicate this policy with courtesy and diplomacy. Any person acting in violation of this policy will be informed or reminded of the policy and asked to comply. Failure to comply will result in consequences consistent with violations of other school policies. Visitors and members of the Mitchell Hamline community are encouraged to be mindful of the surrounding community and not smoke or dispose of commercial tobacco products in public places or sidewalks. Wherever Mitchell Hamline does not have jurisdiction over adjoining streets, sidewalks, parking lots or other common areas, individuals are nevertheless strongly encouraged to comply with the spirit of the policy. It is the expectation that members of the campus community will not loiter near neighboring properties or discard commercial tobacco litter in a way that reflects negatively on Mitchell Hamline.
This Policy shall be effective beginning January 3, 2022.
H. Related Documents
- American Indian Religious Freedom Act, 42 U.S.C. section 1996
- Minnesota Clean Indoor Air Act, MS 144.4167
American Cancer Society Smoking Cessation Resources
Minnesota Department of Health Commercial Tobacco Cessation Resources
Traditional Tobacco and American Indian Communities in Minnesota
Minnesota Department of Health
Quit Partner (Minnesota)
NAQC Quitline Map (outside Minnesota)
 Mitchell Hamline gratefully acknowledges the Prairie Island Indian Community as the source of terminology and model for ensuring that the sacred use of tobacco is allowed, supported, and promoted in this policy.