The Smoke-Free Iowa law requires school districts, area education agencies and community colleges to post signs that their facilities, grounds and vehicles are smoke-free. A number of issues have arisen regarding signage and in some cases, it would be wisest to wait until all the issues have settled before making new purchases. See below for details.
• Tobacco Free Signage: These signs do not meet the technical requirements of the new law, but the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) is working to see if schools with these signs can get a waiver from the new requirement so the schools don’t need to change signs.
• Signage on School Buses: The DE and IASB are trying to determine whether buses are exempt from the new requirements. Until that issue is settled, print the free signs from the IDPH web site (http://www.iowasmokefreeair.gov/) and just tape them in the rear window of the bus so that the sign is visible from the exterior. The American Lung Association of Iowa has free window clings available for order at its web site: http://www.lungia.org/tobacco/sfsign.cfm.
• Signage at “Every Entrance:” IDPH rules require that signs be posted “in and at every entrance to the public place…where smoking is prohibited.” It is reasonable to believe that this includes all building entrances, as well as entrances to athletic venues and parking lots. Areas that are exclusively used as exits do not require signage.
• Prison Industries signs: Prison Industries is selling signs that do comply with the new law. While the law states the information that must be on the signs it does not state what type of sign must be posted. Schools may either purchase from Prison Industries (go to <http://www.iaprisonind.com/html/prodserv/signs/signs_nosmoking.asp> ) or go to <http://www.iowasmokefreeair.gov/> and download the signs there and laminate them for posting around the facilities.