In response to the legalization of cannabis in Canada, the University of Ottawa has updated its policy on smoking and vaping on campus. The policy mirrors provincial regulations and includes additional University-specific restrictions, to ensure the health and safety of all on campus. We believe this new policy is reasonable and consistent with public health imperatives, provincial legislation and the public interest.
Smoking and vaping recreational cannabis will be permitted on uOttawa’s main campus but the following restrictions apply::
- Smoking or vaping cannabis is prohibited in all areas where tobacco smoking or vaping is currently prohibited. This includes:
- University buildings
- covered locations
- tunnels, parking garages, lobbies, stairways and food service patios
- within nine metres of any building entrance or exit, air intake or patio
- sports fields, facilities and surfaces, including public areas within 20 metres of the sports fields, facilities and surfaces
- open communal areas, including the Tabaret lawn and patio, and University Square
- child care facilities and public areas within 20 metres of a child care facility
- the entire Alta Vista Campus, including Roger Guindon Hall, and 600 and 850 Peter Morand
- Smoking, vaping and cultivation of cannabis plants are prohibited in University-operated student residences.
- The use of cannabis by University employees (faculty, staff and contractors) during working hours is prohibited.
- The sale of cannabis, tobacco, tobacco products and electronic cigarettes is prohibited at the University.
- The University is committed to providing reasonable accommodation for medical cannabis use on a case-by-case basis.
Policy 58 was updated to reflect recommendations made by an ad hoc committee to the University administration. The committee reviewed the results of a campus-wide consultation last fall about whether uOttawa should become a smoke-free environment, following the legalization of recreational cannabis last October. Committee members also reviewed studies on cannabis use and policies of other Canadian universities.
The University offers health services for students, staff and professors who have questions or need support regarding cannabis use (for students: Health Services Resource Centre, UCU 203; for staff and professors: Employee and Family Assistance Program).