Smokefree Policy

Smokefree Policy (reviewed April 2017)

1. Purpose

a. It is illegal to smoke or allow smoking in enclosed public areas of properties. The Health Act 2006, which bans smoking, imposes obligations on Unipol to take action to implement the ban and creates criminal offences for those who choose to ignore the legislation.

b. This policy is designed to protect employees, tenants, customers and visitors from exposure to second hand smoke and to assist compliance with the Health Act 2006.

c. This policy covers all types of burnt and smoked products including cigarettes, cigars, tobacco and any device or substance that may be sued for the purpose of smoking.

2. Policy

a. It is policy that all public areas in Unipol's offices and in residential developments will be smoke free.

b. Smoking is to be prohibited in all enclosed and substantially enclosed premises and entrances including doorways and covered walkways. This also includes company owned or leased vehicles. This policy applies to all employees, consultants, contractors, students, tenants, customers and visitors.

3. Implementation

a. Responsibility for policy implementation and its future review rests with the Deputy Chief Executive, who is also responsible for informing Unipol staff. All new staff are to be given a copy of the policy on recruitment/induction.

All staff are obliged to adhere to and support the implementation of the policy and are responsible for informing consultants, contractors, students, tenants, customers and visitors of the policy and their role in the implementation and monitoring of the policy.

b. Staff who wish to smoke outside of buildings should not smoke in areas where they will cause others to walk through their smoke or cause smoke to enter the building through windows. Care should be taken to ensure that ‘outside’ smokers do not congregate in areas where they might be exposed to any health and safety risks (e.g. traffic, building works, deliveries etc).

c. Appropriate ‘no smoking’ signs are to be clearly displayed at the entrances to and within premises andvehicles owned, managed or leased by Unipol.

Smoking in Unipol Properties

d. Tenants who are allocated rooms by a university or college are not permitted to smoke anywhere within their property. Certain flats can be designated as 'smoking flats' by the Tenancy Support Officer as part of the Unipol's enforcement action, to assist smokers and non-smokers to live apart. In designated 'smoking flats', smoking is only permitted in bedrooms with the door closed. Smoking is not permitted in kitchens/living rooms, corridors or shared toilets or bath/shower rooms ie Smoking is not permitted in any shared communal areas.

e. Tenants who were not allocated their room by a University or College but who have signed up to an individually let dwelling, and their guests, will only be permitted to smoke in bedrooms with the door closed. Smoking is not permitted in kitchens/living rooms, corridors or shared toilets or bath/shower rooms in individually let dwellings.

f. Where tenants have signed a joint contract with others for a property, or who live in a self-contained property, the law does not apply and smoking is permitted.

4. Enforcement

a.  People smoking in prohibited areas should be politely asked to desist.

b. Refusal to desist will be unacceptable and should be reported to the Housing Management Officer (in the case of smoking within Unipol properties) or the Deputy Chief Executive (in the case of smoking within Unipol's offices).

c. Visitors who refuse to desist should be politely asked to leave building (with the assistance of security staff if necessary).

d. Staff who refuse to desist from smoking in prohibited areas may be subject to disciplinary action.

e. Tenants who refuse to desist from smoking after being asked politely to do so, should be provided with a letter by their Housing Management Officer advising them that their failure to adhere to this policy potentially puts Unipol in breach of legislation and unless they comply with the policy action will be taken against them. The letter will refer the student to their student advice service for support for smoking cessation.

f. Following a written warning, if the tenant continues to smoke in a prohibited area then the Tenancy Support Officer will arrange a meeting with them.

g. If they continue to smoke after this meeting then they should be sent a standard solicitors' letter.

h. If no positive response is received to the solicitor's letter Unipol will move towards possession proceedings.

Out of consideration for others smokers of e-cigarettes are requested to restrict their use in public areas (as defined under the smoke free policy).