Town of Chestertonís lead, Westchester Public Library officials adopted a
no-smoking policy Thursday.
Effective June 1
the use of tobacco products, including chewing tobacco, will be prohibited
in all of the enclosed areas within WPL buildings without exception, the
Library Board voted unanimously. This includes the Library Service Center
and the Adult Learning Center located there.
Smoking also is
banned on the library grounds except for at designated outdoor picnic tables
located away from the library entrances.
No one may smoke
along any pathway or walkway leading to or from library building entrances
or in any of the grassy areas of the property; this is to prevent patrons or
employees from having to walk through a cloud of smoke to enter or exit the
library, said WPL director Phil Baugher.
and employees may smoke in their vehicles parked on library grounds but at
their own risk; no additional breaks will be allowed any WPL employee who
smokes. Additionally, smokers must dispose of their tobacco remains in the
proper containers provided on the grounds.
donít comply with the new policy will be subject to disciplinary action, and
patrons who donít may have their library privileges suspended or be
prohibited from visiting library property.
Chesterton adopted a limited smoking ban in all town-owned vehicles,
enclosed municipal buildings and within 15 feet of the latter.
Baugher said WPL
has numerous patrons who smoke at its building entrances as well as a severe
problem with discarded tobacco products on the grounds even though
receptacles are provided.
member Rick Hokanson called the new policy ďa step in the right direction.Ē
Added member Drew Rhed, ďItís a work in progress. It would be great if we
could eliminate (smoking) but the town couldnít do it. As much as I oppose
it and itís not what I want around me, I understand itís peopleís rights.Ē
Baugher said he
didnít propose a total smoking ban because ďquitting isnít something thatís
necessarily easy for some people.Ē
The new policy
will be announced through signage, on the WPL website, its Facebook page,
and in a weekly electronic newsletter being offered to patrons.