Tips for Supervisors

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On July 1, 2012, the Maricopa Community Colleges went 100% tobacco-free. Public Safety is responsible for enforcement on campus. Repeat and/or egregious violations will be reported to student affairs for students and supervisors for employees. By way of this document, we want to clearly communicate the expected role of “people leaders” in enforcing this important policy with employees who report to them.

Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that their directly reporting employees are aware of Maricopa’s tobacco-free policy and, as with any other policy violations, are responsible for taking appropriate action to correct noncompliance. The preferred method for initial contact is to meet with all direct reports, hand out the policy, discuss it and give an opportunity for questions.

The issue is not about whether an employee chooses to use tobacco; it is about where the employee uses tobacco. The policy does not mandate individuals quit smoking or using tobacco products; they must not do so on our properties.

How should managers/supervisors talk to employees about the policy?

We recommend that managers/supervisors inform all employees of this policy and ask for voluntary cooperation. Supervisors are expected to inform all employees about available quit tobacco assistance opportunities; information is available online at If you would like any assistance in preparing to have this discussion, or follow up questions after, please contact your designated HR Business Partner:

  • Alyssa Brown (480) 731-8961 – Chandler-Gilbert, Estrella Mountain, Glendale, Phoenix College, and District IT
  • Margie Mesanko (480) 731-8471 – Paradise Valley, Rio Salado, South Mountain, and District Office Academic & Student Affairs, and Human Resources
  • Kathie Bennett (480) 731-8447 – GateWay, Mesa, Scottsdale, and District Office Business Services, Foundation, Legal, Community and Public Affairs

I supervise several employees who smoke. How will they manage under the new policy?

Employees who smoke may use their allotted work breaks to travel off-campus to smoke. However, supervisors must be clear that employees who choose to smoke on their breaks will not be given additional break time. Supervisors are responsible for maintaining department integrity and for treating all employees equitably.

What should managers/supervisors do if one of their employees violates the policy?

For information on how to approach employees who repeatedly violate this policy, please contact:

HR Resolutions and Compliance Consultants

  • Carol Garcia (480) 731-8710 (Estrella Mountain/Southwest Skill Center, Glendale, South Mountain)
  • Sheri Klein (480) 731-8466 (District Office, Rio Salado, Scottsdale, Phoenix College)
  • Chrissy Springfield (480) 731-8752 (Chandler-Gilbert, GateWay/Maricopa Skill Center, Mesa, Paradise Valley)


What about individual rights?

Prohibiting smoking on campus preserves everyone’s right to breathe clean, smoke-free air. This decision supports the rights and privileges of both smokers and non-smokers alike.


Isn’t this a violation of my civil rights?

There is no “right to smoke” under either state or federal law.

Administrative Regulation 4.12 Smoke-Free/Tobacco-Free Environment

The Maricopa County Community College District is dedicated to providing a healthy, comfortable, and educationally productive environment for students, employees, and visitors. In order to promote a healthy learning and work environment, the Chancellor has directed that the Maricopa County Community College District serve as a total smoke free and tobacco free environment, effective July 1, 2012. Smoking (including the use of “e-cigs”) and all uses of tobacco shall be prohibited from all District owned and leased property and facilities, including but not limited to parking lots, rooftops, courtyards, plazas, entrance and exit ways, vehicles, sidewalks, common areas, grounds, athletic facilities, and libraries.
Support signage prohibiting the use of smoking instruments and tobacco shall be placed throughout all college and District locations.
Continued violations by an employee or student shall be handled through the respective conduct procedures established for employees and students.

Taken from 4.21 Breathe Easy Tobacco Free / Smoke Free – Enforcement Guidelines

….”For employees, subsequent violations by the same offender will result in a referral of the employee to the Vice President of Administrative Services or designee. This referral will be made via a Public Safety Incident Report outlining the circumstance of the violation, including the date, time and location of the initial warning.  All Smoke Free/Tobacco Free violations should be treated in the same manner as any other Human Resource policy or regulation violation.”….


Enforcement Guidelines Released

4.21 Breathe Easy Tobacco Free | Smoke Free The Maricopa County Community College District has made the commitment toward a healthier environment for employees, students and guests. On July 1, 2012, all district colleges and district-owned facilities will become tobacco-free. Although the district has undertaken an expansive educational campaign, including a broad cessation component, we  (more…)