FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz. -- As an assistant inspector general, one holds the duty of correcting any violation of regulation, policy, or law. Most violations can be corrected with a "Teach and Train" also known as "an on the spot correction." The topic of smokeless tobacco in the workplace has emerged as a need for a "Teach and Train session."

It's not unusual to see an individual in the workplace discarding (spitting) tobacco in a cup, can, or trash.

The issue was recently presented to the IG's Office."Are individuals allowed to use smokeless tobacco in a Department of the Army occupied workplace'"
No. The use of any tobacco product is prohibited in all DA occupied workplaces.

Army Regulation (AR) 600-63, Army Health Promotion, paragraph 7-3a, 20 SEP 2009, states: "Tobacco use is prohibited in all DA-occupied workplaces except for designated smoking areas, as authorized by Department of Defense Instruction 1010.15, Smoke-Free DoD Facilities. The workplace includes any area inside a building or facility over which DA has custody and control, and where work is performed by military personnel, civilians, or persons under contract to the Army."

To be clear, this restriction applies to Soldiers, DA civilians and contractors.

Leaders at all levels must be aware of Army policy on smokeless tobacco in the workplace and enforce the standard. Many do not interpret AR 600-63 as applying to smokeless tobacco. Smokeless tobacco, also called spit tobacco, chewing tobacco, chew, chaw, dip, or plug, comes in two forms, snuff and chewing tobacco.

The use of any form of tobacco can only be in designated smoking areas. AR 600-63, paragraph 7-3 A. (2) states, the designated smoking area will be at least 50 feet from common points of entrance and exit to a building.

Also, TRADOC Reg 350-6, Enlisted Initial Entry Training (IET) Policies and Administration, paragraph 2-11a, 8 MAY 2007, states: "All cadre and Soldiers with permanent party privileges are prohibited from using tobacco products in areas where IET Soldiers are likely to observe use."

Leaders have a duty to correct any violation of a standard. When they don't, they have just created a new standard. Soldiers look to their leaders to set the example. Leaders do the right thing. Uphold and enforce all standards in and outside the workplace.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Inspector General's Office, 533-1144.