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Section V:

Human Resources


Safety and Benefits


Workplace Smoking Policy and E-Cigarette Policy

Current Effective Date:


Revision History:

5/19/14, 4/1/04, 7/1/03

Original Effective Date:




The purpose of this policy is to establish a smoke-free environment and an environment free of chemical emissions from e-cigarettes for all of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) owned or leased facilities statewide; and inside state vehicles assigned to DHHS.


The DHHS is committed to providing a healthy, safe and productive work environment for all its employees. This policy covers all employees, clients, students, customers and visitors. This policy does not supersede any existing policies that have been established in compliance with program accreditation requirements.

Each Division has the authority to adopt and enforce a more restrictive tobacco use policy, upon approval by the Department, for their buildings and grounds. The Division of State Operated Healthcare Facilities has adopted a separate tobacco-free campus policy for its statewide facilities in accordance with this departmental policy.


Smoking: The use of a lighted cigarette, lighted cigar, lighted pipe or any other lighted tobacco product.

E-cigarette: Any electronic oral device that employs a mechanical heating element, battery, or electronic circuit regardless of shape or size and that can be used to heat a liquid nicotine solution or any other substances, and the use or inhalation of which simulates smoking. The term shall include any such device, whether manufactured, distributed, marketed, or sold as an e-cigarette, e-cigar, e-pipe, or under any other product name or descriptor. Products approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for medical purposes are excluded from this policy.


  1. Smoking and the use of e-cigarettes will be strictly prohibited within DHHS owned or leased buildings statewide.

  2. Smoking and the use of e-cigarettes shall not be permitted outdoors within a distance of 50 feet from entrances, operable windows, and ventilation systems of DHHS facilities. Signs will be clearly posted at entrances to all DHHS facilities and at locations reasonably calculated to inform employees and the public of the prohibition.

  3. Smoking and the use of e-cigarettes shall be prohibited inside state vehicles assigned to DHHS.

  4. Each division director, manager and supervisor will have enforcement responsibility with their workforce. Any violations of this policy will follow normal disciplinary procedures as they relate to personal conduct.

  5. Each division director is to ensure that all employees are aware of this policy and shall have signs made and posted to create visible awareness of the smoking and e-cigarette regulations for buildings and grounds.

  6. Information and access to evidence-based tobacco cessation resources, including but not limited to QuitlineNC (1-800-QuitNow) and treatment medications, will be disseminated to managers and employees through the DHHS Division of Human Resources and the State Health Plan by the DHHS Division of Public Health/Tobacco Prevention and Control Branch. The Employee Assistance Program will also serve as a resource to assist employees if requested

  7. The success of this policy will depend upon the thoughtfulness, consideration and cooperation of tobacco users and non-tobacco users. All employees share in the responsibility for adhering to and enforcing this policy.

For questions or clarification on any of the information contained in this policy, please contact Human Resources. For general questions about department-wide policies and procedures, contact the DHHS Policy Coordinator.

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