But again, I'm not a lawyer. My university recently instituted a policy stating that there can be no smoking anywhere on campus (which I think is utterly stupid - why should an employer be able to regulate legal employee activity that occurs outside of work?). I see this as policing employees health, and there have been no legal challenges so far to this policy. So maybe there isn't any legal issue.It may be time outside of work, but the university still owns the campus, and they can set their rules for the campus. You can still smoke--you just have to get off their lawn to do it :)
Don't get me wrong, I actually like the consequences of the policy - I don't smoke and can't stand the smell of secondhand smoke. But whether I like the policy or not has no bearing on whether it is or isn't legal.
I took the time to actually look up the law on smoking in my state...and it turns out you're right.
Any person, who owns, operates, manages, or controls an establishment, facility, or outdoor area can declare that entire establishment, facility, or outdoor area as a nonsmoking place. Smoking can also be prohibited in any place by placing a sign stating that smoking is prohibited in the area.
So prohibiting smoking in an outdoor area under your control is perfectly allowed.
However, IMO there are still problems with this policy - it even bans smokeless forms of tobacco, such as chewing tobacco. Now while I wasn't able to find a strict definition of "smoking," as defined by my state, I'd imagine it doesn't include things like chewing tobacco. I can't see any justification for that ban other than the board of regents, which governs all public schools in my state, wants to policy student and employee health. which is even a stated goal of the policy
The goal of the policy is to preserve and improve the health, comfort and environment of students, employees and any persons occupying our campuses.
If employers are allowed to start policing employees health, then this is going to get out of hand really fast. What are employers going to do, mandate fat people exercise?
EDIT: Sorry to get this thread off on a tangent...