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  • Daniel Boutilier

Cannabis yo(U)

Updated: Sep 27, 2020

Sydney, N.S.

Daniel Boutilier

Five things to know as CBU makes the move to a smoke-free campus



1. The fines are going to hurt – a lot. When Halifax made the move to ban smoking on public streets and other municipal property this Monday, they instituted fines ranging from $25.00 to $2,000.00 with no clear program of escalation. CBU on the other hand has clear benchmarks: $50.00 for the first offence, $100.00 for the second, and $250.00 for the third. Repeated offenses after this will earn you an audience with John Mayich, Director of Student Affairs. The offender may negotiate a ‘pre-hearing settlement’ in return for their guilty plea, or else the matter will be brought before the Student Judicial Board – with powers up to and including expulsion.

2. The smoking ban will be enforced. Unlike CBU’s previous ‘blue-line policy’ which prohibited smoking within 25 meters of University buildings, Security Services will have the ability to issue fines this time around. So even while there are no plans to increase Security’s presence on campus after the policy’s initial roll-out, the program will be enforced more effectually than previous, somewhat symbolic efforts. Students will be required to present their student or government ID if asked by Security and will have up to two hours to do so. Section 10.8.4. of the revised Code of Student Conduct reads: “Failure to produce identification upon request may result in sanctions or disciplinary measures applied against the Student, pursuant to this Code.”

cbu map-smoking areas (1)

3. Security does not have the right to enter you room if they smell tobacco smoke or cannabis. They can inform Doug Connors, the Residence Manager, who may issue a fine if behaviour contrary to the Residence Agreement and Student Code of Conduct is suspected. They may also call the police, but only have the right to enter your room if invited or in the case of an emergency – typically a situation where a student is at imminent risk for harm. Given the strong smell associated with many forms of cannabis, and the fact that storing, grinding, and rolling cannabis are activities not prohibited by the residence agreement, preventing students from smoking in residence rooms may continue to be a difficult task.

4. While security will be conducting rounds of designated smoking areas during downtime and as part of their regular duties, this is unlikely to occur more regularly than once or twice every couple hours. The current lighting of the parking lots has been judged to be sufficent and there are currently no plans to install cameras – if you don’t feel safe walking to and from these designated areas, better to err on the side of caution and ask a friend to accompany you. But keep in mind that on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights there are two security officers assigned to Residence – so if you’ve have a few drinks and can’t be bothered to walk past the sidewalk, make sure you’ve got at least one William Lyon MacKenzie King to cover it.


As if a fine weren’t enough, look at the judgement in those eyes.

5. CBU has timed the initiation of their smoke-free campus policy primarily to coincide with the October 17th legalization of cannabis, but has also developed Harm Reduction Week to offer support to those hoping to quit smoking or otherwise improve their health. Director of Student Affairs, John Mayich, wants to remind everyone that access to smoking cessation programs is covered under the Univeristy health plan, and that any International Students who need help paying for these programs will have financial support from the University.

More infromation about this week’s events can be found here.

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